The meaning of Smoke & Mirrors is the use of deception, to obscure or embellish a situation, to distract you from the truth. This skill is not exclusive to the magicians. It is a practiced skill for many legislators. The current activity surrounding the ACA (Affordable Care Act). Meetings with constituents raising their voices for protecting their medical care, is ignored by the congressional majority. Rather than fighting ACA and trying to repeal it for the past eight years, they should have fixed and improved it! Here is the smoke & mirrors – the rhetoric is making medical insurance accessible and optional. Optional, is difficult to understand when you must have car insurance. Of course, you could decide to never drive a car. However, if you drive you must have insurance! Accessible does not mean affordable! The objective is to make medical cost sustainable – this means preventive medicine and an increasing pool of insured.
Clever use of words continues to be the smoke & mirrors of those intending to find ways to make their employers (lobbyist and campaign funders) more money. There are programs that belong to public (governmental) institutions versus those that belong to for-profit enterprises. Prestidigitations by those who work for their electors have consequences. Journalism sees through the smoke and rectify the refraction distortions of mirrors.