In the 1800s (the decade) was it better to build a strong national state to pursue American interests in Europe and elsewhere, or turn inward, away from Europe and toward the West.
In the 1800s, it was still necessary to turn to Europe in many important ways. The major reason for this is the lack of inland transportation in the United States.
In this decade, the US economy still depended tremendously on trade with Europe. This was true in part because it was so difficult to transport goods within the United States. There were no effective ways of moving goods other than downstream on navigable rivers. This greatly limited the potential of the domestic market.
This meant that the US needed to turn to Europe if it was to increase the size of its economy in the 1800s.