As a product of a European family, I've found the often-unbridled American sense of optimism and self-confidence (We're Americans, we can get through this, we can accomplish anything we put our mind to, etc etc.) to be strange, undesirable, and capable of producing unwanted outcomes.
Barbara Ehrenreich calls this "the delusional optimism of mainstream, all-American, positive thinking". I agree, and think it's a partial cause of the mess this country is in. We just assume that foreign banks will always want to hold the dollar, because America is, of course, the premiere business location. We assume that our healthcare must be the best in the world.
She's right that a dose of realism is urgently required as we face the extreme challenges of waking up to our reduced place in the world in the next decade or so.