Deirdre Nansen McCloskey

Coronavirus must not rob us of our liberties forever

For a century, emergencies such as this one have been justifications for state coercion

(Getty Images)

The American economist and historian Robert Higgs noted long ago that during the 20th century the various wars, and the various declared equivalents of war, such as against drugs and viruses, regularly led to permanent expansions of state power. Power is the ability to coerce physically, war being the pre-eminent coercion.

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