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opportunism

[op-er-too-niz-uh m, -tyoo-] /ˌɒp ərˈtu nɪz əm, -ˈtyu-/
noun
1.
the policy or practice, as in politics, business, or one's personal affairs, of adapting actions, decisions, etc., to expediency or effectiveness regardless of the sacrifice of ethical principles.
2.
action or judgment in accordance with this policy.
Origin
1865-1870
1865-70; < Italian opportunismo, equivalent to opportun(o) (< Latin opportūnus; see opportune) + -ismo -ism
Related forms
opportunist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for opportunism
  • My only problem with this speech of his is that he built his fortune on opportunism, not the needs of the poor.
  • As such, polar bears provide an excellent example of evolutionary opportunism within a widespread mammalian lineage.
  • Some of it also appears as cynical political opportunism.
  • That's a journey from mere opportunism to pathological hypocrisy, a trip that only the boldest flip-floppers ever dare make.
  • But if political opportunism is the main cause of their current blindness, it's not the only one.
  • He accused her of financial opportunism and forbade the marriage.
  • The picture of army life is one of anarchy and opportunism, the daily triumph of expedient behavior.
  • Tommy carried the family's thin strain of virulent opportunism.
  • Religious zeal as well as hypocrisy and opportunism are the factors here.
  • We don't believe there is any opportunism involved in being a minority.
Word Origin and History for opportunism
n.

"policy of adopting actions to circumstances while holding goals unchanged," 1870, from opportune + -ism. Cf. opportunist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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