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Walking in a smoke screen

Walking in a smoke screen

One of the definitions of the phrase “smoke screen” is : [noun] an action intended to conceal or confuse or obscure. In military terms it’s a way of preventing the other side from precisely seeing your movements in time to take action. I couldn’t find the exact origin of the phrase, but I discovered references to it that predate World War I.

In time of war we have to believe a smoke screen is a wonderful tool to reach an end goal. It’s used when few other options still exist and is, frankly, easily implemented. However, in regard to the creation of laws by politicians, the smoke screen tactic should be viewed as unethical. In our long political history as a nation we can find only a few examples of this practice prior to World War I. Perhaps it was the advent of modern communications that seduced law makers to use smoke screens to enact their agendas because in the light of a clear battle field their plans would be shot down.

I can cite a number of occasions that the smoke screen was used to enact laws that ended up being very unpopular once the smoke cleared. By then, the challenge to repeal a law was even more difficult.

The entire discussion of federal income tax is one such occasion. One side of the political aisle claimed it was a way to make the wealthy pay to help the poor, that the taxation would never be applied to the middle and lower class. In point of fact, federal income tax has never been fully ratified by two thirds majority of the states, yet, here we have it. The reality is that once adopted we all were required to pay taxes on our income. It took a bit of time to trickle down, but no one can deny this fact.

Another such law in recent years was the enactment of The Patriot Act. I can say with confidence that few Americans have ever truly read the detail of the Patriot Act, let alone tried to understand it’s full ramifications. Implemented quickly, during a time of crisis, we’re all left to live with it’s consequences.

So here we are today suffocating from the smoke screens our politician regularly toss in our path, blinding us while new methods to tax us become law. Implemented quickly, during a time of crisis, we’re all left to live with it’s consequences.

We’ve heard politicians from both sides of the aisle recently claim that the commoners, the middle and lower class will not be taxed because the wealthy should carry the burden. Sounds good, but it’s just a polished version of an old smoke screen. By increasing tax burdens on corporations our representatives can say they were no party to taxing us and then point to the new corporate taxes. Yet corporations take it all in stride and merely pass their increased burden on to the consumer.

Do you see the smoke screen?


We should be as out raged at corporate taxes as we are of new taxes being implemented directly upon us. The late night additions to laws being voted is the latest tactic, before any legitimate discussion has occurred.

I, for one, am outraged. My vote will always be to remove any incumbent until our government gets the message. It’s our only hope. Remove everyone and get fresh blood in congress, in a very short time we won’t have to worry about the back room deals and strategies of professional politicians. I think then, we will restore true representative government.

Thanks for reading this far.


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