Ministers may not be taking a pay cut, and obviously their many special advisers wouldn't be expected to do anything of that nature either - but then we should never underestimate how difficult it is for them, at this time.
Every day they have to do something that goes against every instinct they have developed during their years in office - they must provide the public with information that is accurate to a high degree, even when it does not necessarily make them look good.
Certainly if I were a special adviser (a "spad" to use the unlovely term that they enjoy) this would be like using my left foot when I am naturally right-footed. It would feel counter-intuitive. It would take all the good out of it.
There are obvious reasons why, say, journalists go over to "the other side" and become "spads" - the money's great, and for some of them, going over to the other side is an easy enough journey to make anyway. Arguably by being in journalism they were on the other side, and now they're on the side they wanted to be on, from the start.
But in normal times, the deepest attraction for anyone in the game of government, at this level, is what might broadly be described as the management of information. It's our old friend "controlling the narrative".
In olden days, you'd see a PJ Mara or an Alastair Campbell standing at the back of the room "observing" the minister speaking to the media.
But there is now a whole community of observers, doing whatever it is they do - you could sense them straining at the leash with that photo-op of Leo and Simon Harris with hospital staff, the one that was criticised by Professor John Crown.
But then for most governments, this is close enough to being their core activity. Having ceded control of so many things to what might broadly be called the "corporate sector", controlling the narrative is one of the few areas of real power that is left to them.
And it's fun - yes, apart from the money, and the bit of power to be found on the other side, the daily trade in dubious information is most enjoyable.
When Boris Johnson was ailing recently, I was getting texts from someone who knows someone who knows someone else who knows someone else again, who knew of the prime minister's true condition.
The fun part was that at all times, this "insider" version was at odds with what the general public were being told, via the media - who themselves may have known more than they were saying, or known different.
And in the end I have no idea who was right, and who was wrong - I just have a basic rule that whatever is the version that Johnson and his spads are selling, has a 99pc chance of being wrong.
Yet I have also come to realise that this morass of misinformation doesn't just come out of a desire to fool the people - it is one the sordid pleasures of power, the buzz of withholding information or doling it out in some abbreviated form.
These guys just love knowing something, that somebody else doesn't know.
But these days they're having to share most of the things they know, to find some palatable way to present us with bad news. When people are actually dying, there's only so much you can withhold.
You can't really do a Trump on it, and just run an alternative TV version of everything.
A personal favourite in this genre was Trump during the Ukraine scandal, wanting the Ukraine leader to talk in a TV interview about investigating Joe Biden - some are still under the impression that Trump wanted an actual investigation, in truth he didn't really give a damn, as long as it appeared that way to people who were watching television.
It also explains why he hardly ever talks on TV about the tens of thousands of deaths from the virus - for him, if it doesn't exist in his TV world, it doesn't exist at all.
Our representatives and their advisers are still constrained by some of the conventions of civilisation, so they're having to play this one relatively straight - or so it seems. Not only do they need to suppress their natural instincts for codding us, we must suppress our natural instincts which would usually tell us that we are being codded. They have trained us over the years to be sceptical of all their communications, and now their finely-honed strategies have been reduced down to one main move - if in doubt, pass it to Dr Tony Holohan.
And yet sometimes it is still hard to shake the feeling that they know as much about where all this is going, as our ancestors knew during the time of the bubonic plague.
In that sense we are all in this together.
It's all about the Premier League now. Yes, in our quest to find some way back to the future, the plan to restart the rest of the season in June would be in that sweet spot of risk and reward.
The reward would be an incalculable boost to the mental health of millions of people - this is no longer simply something to be vaguely desired, something that would be nice all the same.
It is crucial to the success of all the international efforts of recent weeks, that in the not-too-distant future, people can turn on the television and find an actual game of football, the result of which they don't already know.
The Germans, having had a good war against the virus, are hoping to have their football back some time this month - they understand the dynamics of this, the need to avoid drifting into that zone in which large numbers of people just get ornery.
As regards the risks, an elite professional football league would probably be the most controlled environment you could imagine for any such undertaking - even in peacetime, your Premier League clubs have battalions of doctors and physios and medics of every kind, the players truly are a protected species. And yes, even in peacetime, players can get injured, or sick, or worse.
In the perfect scenario, matches would be played behind closed doors, and it would feel like a tournament, with the games on free-to-air TV every day. And the Premier League being a global phenomenon, it would feel almost like a World Cup - with Liverpool winning.
Not that that is of any importance in the greater scheme - in fact I'd almost forgotten they were leading the League by 25 points, so it's nice to be reminded of that too.
The death took place in Belfast last week of Marty Lundy, frontman of the band Katmandu, who were much-loved in Dublin in the early 1980s and who had the distinction of being probably the most sophisticated covers band we have ever seen in this country.
They had their own stuff too, but their musicianship truly came alive when doing razor-sharp versions of Bowie or Roxy Music. And in Marty Lundy in particular they had someone with a trait unusual in the world of serious musos - he was tremendously witty.
At the Baggot Inn on Sunday nights he might congratulate Evonne Goolagong for winning some tennis match - for no reason except that it sounded funny. Or you might find him beside you at the bar, ordering a pint in the middle of a song.
Katmandu were from Northern Ireland but they weren't going to be mistaken for The Undertones - they were Steely Dan fans. And their keyboard player, the late and also much-loved maestro Pat 'Fitzy' Fitzpatrick, had studied at the Royal London School of Music - alongside Elvis Costello's piano-man, Steve Nieve. Indeed Paul Cleary of the Blades tells me that he'd go to Katmandu gigs just to see the brilliance of the drummer Peter McKinney, who later played with The Waterboys, as did bassist Trevor Hutchinson.
The voice of Marty doing Heaven by Talking Heads would be perfect for today: "Heaven is a place…a place where nothing ever happens."