The folks at Europe2020 http://www.europe2020.org are predicting dire things ahead for the U.S. and world economy and society:
"According to LEAP/E2020, there is only one very small launch window left to prevent this scenario from shaping up: the next four months, before summer 2009. Practically speaking, the April 2009 G20 Summit is probably the last chance to put on the right tracks the forces at play, i.e. before the sequence of UK and then US defaults begin . Failing which, they will lose their capacity to control events , including those in their own countries for many of them; and the world will enter this phase of geopolitical dislocation like a “drunken boat”. At the end of this phase of geopolitical dislocation, the world will look more like Europe in 1913 rather than our world in 2007."
They point out that President Obama and other world leaders are treating the current crisis as a problem to the system which can be fixed, rather than as a failure of the system, and that only a radical redesign will succeed.