The United States has enjoyed the most favorable margins of error. Risk-taking could flourish under such circumstances.
It is protected by two natural barriers, the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Its neighbor to the north – Canada – is culturally a cousin and has never been a threat. Its neighbor to the south – Mexico – was defeated in wars and lost large pieces of territory to the U.S. It, too, has never posed a threat to the security and stability of the U.S.
The indigenous population – the American Indians – were driven from their territorial homelands, killed in wars, placed on reservations. The nation has access to immense natural resources, chief among them land.
Margin of error: An amount (usually small) that is allowed for in case of miscalculation or change of circumstances.
Risk (noun): A situation involving exposure to danger, the possibility that something unpleasant or unwelcome will happen, a person or thing regarded as likely to turn out well or badly, as specified, in a particular context or respect; a person or thing regarded as a threat or likely source of danger; a possibility of harm or damage against which something is insured; the possibility of financial loss.
risk (verb): Expose (something or something valued) to danger, harm, or loss; act or fail to act in such a way as to bring about the possibility of (an unpleasant or unwelcome event); incur the chance of unfortunate consequences by engaging in (an action).