In response to:

My Papers? No Thank You

Michael1364 Wrote: Apr 27, 2012 3:46 PM
Stop with the stupdity please. Arizona is a sovereign state. It has the legal obligation to protect its borders. If you don't like the law, vote the lawmakers out. If you don't live there, or can't vote them out if you do live there MOVE

With the Supreme Court taking up Arizona's "show me your papers" immigration law, we're once again thrust into a useful debate over the role of the government and the obligations of the citizen -- and non-citizen. Rather than come at it from the usual angle, I thought I'd try something different.

If there were one thing I could impress upon people about the nature of the state, it's that governments by their very nature want to make their citizens "legible."

I borrow that word from James C. Scott, whose book "Seeing Like a State" left a lasting impression on me. Scott...