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confusion worse confounded

Confusion made worse. Recess was already underway when the fire alarm rang, leading to confusion worse confounded. Trying to wrangle all those kids was certainly a chore!
See also: confusion, worse

smoke and mirrors

deception and confusion. (Said of statements or more complicated rhetoric used to mislead people rather than inform. Alludes to the way a magician uses optical illusion to create believability while performing a trick. Fixed order.) Most people know that the politician was just using smoke and mirrors to make things look better than they really were. Her report was little more than smoke and mirrors. No one will believe any of it.
See also: and, mirror, smoke

throw someone or something into confusion

to cause people or a process to become confused, aimless, or disorderly. She made her entrance early and threw eveyone onstage into confusion. The judge's surprise ruling threw the courtroom into confusion.
See also: confusion, throw

smoke and mirrors

Smoke and mirrors are words and actions that are intended to deceive or confuse people, especially by making something seem better than it really is. The president claims that his economic plan is free of the smoke and mirrors of previous presidential budget proposals. Thousands of shareholders learned too late that the company's image of success had been created with smoke and mirrors. Note: Magicians sometimes use smoke and mirrors when they are performing tricks, in order to confuse or deceive people.
See also: and, mirror, smoke

smoke and mirrors

the obscuring or embellishing of the truth of a situation with misleading or irrelevant information. chiefly North American
1998 Sunday Telegraph Ministers accused the Conservatives of a ‘smoke and mirrors’ con trick.
See also: and, mirror, smoke

smoke and ˈmirrors

used to describe ways of tricking people or of hiding the truth: He said the government had used smoke and mirrors to raise taxes.The commission has declared war on the smoke and mirrors of sales promotions.
See also: and, mirror, smoke

smoke and mirrors

n. a strategy of deception and cover up. Her entire report was nothing but smoke and mirrors. Who could believe any of it?
See also: and, mirror, smoke

smoke and mirrors

Something that deceives or distorts the truth: Your explanation is nothing but smoke and mirrors.
See also: and, mirror, smoke
References in classic literature ?
The two women had met in the confusion of the first skirmish at the close of twilight.
But in the confusion I managed to crawl into an empty lower bunk out of the way.
The number of the assailants was a cause of confusion.
There was riot and confusion enough in the treasury, but no violence that I saw.
I hardly knew where I was going, or what I meant to do next; I was conscious of nothing but the confusion of my own thoughts, when I was abruptly recalled to myself--awakened, I might almost say--by the sound of rapidly approaching wheels close behind me.
muttered the Doctor, whose altered visage betrayed the utter confusion which beset his faculties.
Never before have I witnessed such an utter confusion in her laws, or a specimen that so completely bids defiance to the distinctions of class and genera.
Reeve, Morgan, Ross and Evan discuss the confusion caused by court decisions on voter ID and abortion restrictions, the controversy over the latest ad from the Wendy Davis campaign, and issues with standardized testing in Texas schools.
But in truth, this encapsulation mistakes a method for a purpose: confusion merely serves as an indicator of the underlying problems that trademark law seeks to prevent.
But a new study led by Sidney D'Mello of the University of Notre Dame has suggested that confusion when learning can be beneficial if it is properly induced, effectively regulated, and ultimately resolved.
Often, our first thought regarding confusion is to say that "it is a little dementia," not realizing that in the elderly population, confusion can equal many things--including sepsis.
Gabe's confusion about his own sexuality, which only is complicated by the moral leader, the priest, actually fostering a love affair between them, is enough to break most readers' hearts.
No wonder there is so much confusion among churchgoers, with the homilies we hear in some parishes.
Native ministry was the subject of a presentation from the co-chairs of the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples (ACIP) on the move to create the new position of national indigenous bishop, now called the Anglican indigenous bishop since an earlier acronym had created confusion with another native group's acronym.