house of cards

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house of cards

A plan, organization, or other entity that is destined to fail due to a weak structure or foundation (likened to a literal house of cards, which is built by balancing playing cards against one another, and is very easily toppled). Greg decided against investing in the new technology company because he got the feeling that it was a house of cards. So your plan is to just cram and miraculously get good grades on all of your exams? That sounds like a real house of cards to me!
See also: card, house, of

house of cards

A weak and fragile structure, plan, or organization, as in Her scheme to reorganize the school sounds like another house of cards, or Jerry built his entire business on what turned out to be a house of cards. This metaphoric expression alludes to the structure made by balancing playing cards against one another. [First half of 1600s]
See also: card, house, of