smoke and mirrors

From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


English Wikipedia has an article on:


From techniques traditionally used by stage magicians.


smoke and mirrors

  1. A deceptive, fraudulent, or unconvincing explanation or description.
    • 1987 March 21, Ronald Reagan, Presidential Radio Address:
      Budget process? It's more like a magic show. It's wink and blink and smoke and mirrors and pulling rabbits out of hats, but almost all that ever comes up are designs to hide increases for the special interests.
    • 2007, Australian Senate, Parliamentary debates Australia: Senate:
      On revenue raising issues, Mr Harris reveals what a master of smoke and mirrors Bob Carr really is.
    • 2009 October 17, Barack Obama, Weekly Address: Taking the Insurance Companies on Down the Stretch:
      It’s smoke and mirrors. It’s bogus. And it’s all too familiar. Every time we get close to passing reform, the insurance companies produce these phony studies as a prescription and say, "Take one of these, and call us in a decade."
    • 2022 January 12, Nigel Harris, “Comment: Unhappy start to 2022”, in RAIL, number 948, page 3:
      As for the IRP, Secretary of State Grant Shapps continues to peddle snake oil, smoke and mirrors. His reaction to near-universal IRP condemnation from politicians, local and national media, and all but a few rail specialists was to dismiss the lot of us (in the condescending and patronising tone we have now come to expect) as "critics and naysayers".

Related terms[edit]