rationalize

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rationalize

(răsh′ə-nə-līz′)
v.
To devise self-satisfying but false or inconsistent reasons for one's behavior, especially as an unconscious defense mechanism through which irrational acts or feelings are made to appear rational to oneself.

ra′tion·al·i·za′tion (-lĭ-zā′shən) n.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Conventional rationalizers largely take folk morality for granted.
Rationalization in child adoption has been only partially successful, especially if we measure success practically, as rationalizers did themselves, by counting legislative reforms, calculating the growth of professional authority, and computing the superior outcomes of adoption arranged by experts.