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Related to kick upstairs: kicking around
kick somebody upstairs
to give someone a new job which seems more powerful but is really less powerful, usually in order to stop them causing trouble for you Brown is being kicked upstairs to become chairman of the new company.
Promote someone to a higher but less desirable position, especially one with less authority. For example, Paul never forgave the company for kicking him upstairs at age 55. This expression alludes to its antonym, kick downstairs, simply meaning "eject." [Mid-1900s]
To promote to a higher yet less desirable position.