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Monday, January 02, 2006

Word for the Week: expediency

Our world has become the victim rather than the benefactor of expediency. In our haste for results, we accept the most apparently suitable means to acquire the end we seek. Inevitably, the greater value in this equation defines the variable of speed while neglecting the element of caution or analysis which expediency implies.

Pursuing expeditious means with minimum attention to their implications, more often than not, produces spurious results. Consider the following: The Patriot and No Child Left Behind Acts, the 2004 Election (Can you say Ohio?), and Stem Cell Research.

I'm sure that you have your own short list.

Main Entry: ex·pe·di·en·cy
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural -cies1 : the quality or state of being suited to the end in view : SUITABILITY, FITNESS
2 obsolete a : HASTE, DISPATCH b : an enterprise requiring haste or caution
3 : adherence to expedient means and methods;put more emphasis on expediency than on principle -- W. H. Jones
4 : a means of achieving a particular end : EXPEDIENT- ex·pe·di·en·tial--adjective

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