rearrange

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rearrange (the) deckchairs on the Titanic

To partake in or undertake some task, activity, or course of action that will ultimately prove trivial or futile in its possible effect or outcome. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. For all his blustering about overhauling the education system, the prime minister might as well have been rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic for all the good these proposals will do. You're applying for arts council funding? Why don't you just rearrange deckchairs on the Titanic while you're at it?

be like rearranging (the) deckchairs on the Titanic

To be a task, activity, or course of action that will ultimately prove trivial or futile in its possible effect or outcome. You're giving the baby a bath before we eat spaghetti? That's like rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic.

be like rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic

  (British & Australian humorous)
if an activity is like rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic, it it will have no effect
Usage notes: The Titanic was a large ship that sank suddenly in 1912 with most of its passengers.
With unemployment at record levels, plans for better advertising of job vacancies are a bit like rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.
References in periodicals archive ?
The results, five years in the making, revealed the Ebola VP40 protein exists as a dimer, not as a monomer as previously thought, and it rearranges its structure to assemble filaments to build the virus shell or "matrix" to release countless new viruses from infected cells.
Speaking about her famous role as a bunny-boiler in Fatal Attraction, she says: "Great art rearranges you permanently.
In both companies' mice, the immune system rearranges these human genes to create a variety of antibodies known as IgM immunoglobulins.
The virus rearranges the genetic material inside the cell to replicate itself.
C before it rearranges itself into its regular, equilibrium form.