The history of tax is also one of conflict, danger and upheaval.The purpose of the state has always been to protect the population from internal and external dangers. And that is from where it derives its legitimacy. Now it is in the nature of things that wars and other crises devour enormous financial resources that have to be borne by the general public. In such moments, rulers often get creative and temporarily introduce new measures to meet the costs arising from war or the fight against epidemics. In many cases, however, these new forms of taxation remain in place and are not, after all, of such a provisional nature as once claimed. In this piece, I will discuss the longevity of provisional taxation and use the Swiss direct federal tax, which has its origins in the military tax of the First World War, as an illustration.