Smoke and mirrors is a metaphor for a deceptive, fraudulent or insubstantial explanation or description. The source of the name is based on magicians' illusions, where magicians make objects appear or disappear by extending or retracting mirrors amid a distracting burst of smoke. The expression may have a connotation of virtuosity or cleverness in carrying out such a deception............More generally, "smoke and mirrors" may refer to any sort of presentation by which the audience is intended to be deceived, such as an attempt to fool a prospective client into thinking that one has capabilities necessary to deliver a product in question.
Let's see if I have got this right. David Cameron has promised the right to buy houses the Government doesn't own at a discount to people [housing association tenants] living in those houses. And who pays the discount? The Government aka the taxpaxer. What do the Housing Associations think about this? Well according to the Conservatives, they will have no cause for concern because 'they will receive the full market value of the sold property'. So that's all good then.
Erm, just a little minute, Mr C. Could you please tell me where that money for discounts is going to come from. Yes, Yes I know the taxpayer - but how? Oh yes in the Gruniad article [link above] it does say that councils are going to be required [aka forced] to sell approx 5% of their more expensive properties when they become vacant [I am a bit unsure of this 'vacant' issue. When the tenant dies? Or moves out of their own violition? Unlikely that, say, there will be many expensive, larger properties vacated by the former means as the bedroom tax has seen off older tenants; families needing and entitled to larger properties will not be able to move to smaller properties and I have heard too many tales of the bedroom tax meaning that tenants of large properties incurring the levy trying very hard to get into smaller properties, which are unavailable as they have already been sold off!] and build cheaper properties with the proceeds. But that doesn't answer the question - where is the money for the discount on the housing association properties. Oh its all part of the fiscal plan.
The fiscal plan. Could this be just smoke and mirrors? Apparently the Conservative Party is the party of the working people. Just like the Conservative Party was the party of the National Health Service in 2010. That was smoke and mirrors then too.