When Boris Johnson’s government responded to the coronavirus crisis by embarking on a programme of unprecedented state control of citizens’ lives and public subsidies on a massive scale, we at Reaction reluctantly endorsed most of those policies in the short term. Along with a majority of people, we recognised that war and pestilence constitute the exceptions that prove the rule with regard to state interventionism, since government was designed to bring the unique power possessed by the state to the assistance of citizens in such extreme crises.