Knee-Deep In The Big Muddy Meaning
(chiefly US, idiomatic) Stuck in a predicament; mired in a difficult situation, especially one resulting from poor judgment or bad leadership.
Example: 1994, Cal Thomas, "Clinton should heed Gore advice," New York Daily News, 16 Sept. (retrieved 4 Jan. 2010):
Polls show three-quarters of the people don't want us to invade Haiti. Nonetheless, it appears we're about to go knee-deep in the Big Muddy.
2002, Edward Iwata, "Enron faces 'hornet's nest' of charges," USA Today, 16 July (retrieved 4 Jan. 2010):
The 40-year-old Fastow, a hot-tempered financial whiz, engineered the controversial partnerships that led to Enron's meltdown. . . . "He's knee-deep in the big muddy," Meagher says.
2007, Janice Langan-Fox et al., Research Companion to the Dysfunctional Workplace, ISBN 9781845429324, p. 142:
In the classic â€˜knee deep in the Big Muddyâ€™ scenario (Staw, 1976), individuals continue to contribute to a losing cause long after it is clear that this is a tremendous waste of money.