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Difference between Be in murky waters and Fish in murky waters

be in murky waterssaid of a confused situation where people may behave in morally questionable ways:

  • Patton is now trying to continue running the government without the benefit of a budget. This puts him in murky waters….

Cf.: muddy the waters—make the situation less clear:

  • Announcements that parts of this or that sector are to be sold, followed by a retraction just a few days later, serve only to muddy the waters.

fish in murky waters —(also: fish in troubled waters) take advantage of a confused or dubious situation:

  • The state has not been careful with its land, which only serves the interest of those who like to fish in murky waters.