Here are two fascinating but contradictory viewpoints of where America is going compared to the rest of the world. This one from the Futurist paints an optimistic picture for America, and a less optimistic picture for others. This one from Audacious Epigone paints a much darker prediction for the US, but a brighter picture for some surprising countries.
Curiously, both are correct, as far as they go. The complete picture is far more complex than any number of short blog analyses could portray.
The US is walking a tightrope of demographic decline, as are Europe and Russia. China is walking a tightrope of infrastructure rot, as are Russia and the oil states. India is walking tightropes of simmering religious war, impending war with Pakistan and China, antiquated and corrupt bureaucratic structures, and disintegrative multiculturalism. Latin America walks tightropes of cultural incompetence and acute social stratification. Africa continues to lose its human capital at a hopeless rate. Muslim countries are drowning in the barbarity and utter primitiveness of tribal and religious customs and demands.
The question might be: who can prop up their economy and society the longest? Neither C41 at AE, nor the Futurist, discussed the possibility of large scale warfare. In my opinion, there is at least a 50:50 chance of such a thing occurring in the next 20 years, involving China, Russia, the US, and large portions of Central and Southern Asia, and the middle east.
New Zealand would be a fine country, if the leftists would all stay in the North Island, leaving the South Island for rational, hardworking, future-oriented people. In reality, people looking toward the next level will need to establish invisible enclaves within the countries best able to enforce the rule of law for the longest period of time.
When the breakthroughs happen in molecular manufacturing, machine intelligence, genetic therapies, space launch and propulsion, etc. etc., the people who are ready to bypass the "clutter" of between level bureaucracies and cultures will be in the best position to establish the next level.