Mechanized economics is the only way to go. If the USA would not have had the powerful union laws it had, the industries would have mechanized and automated and more of the labor would be done by machines than by people and there would still be a good manufacturing base in the USA. Also, it would also go greener because why not. And they wouldn't be moving to China. But they have and that's that and because China doesn't care about the environment, 21% of all cancer cases reported globally are in china.
The future is technological. it may not be those beautiful white cities with the cool looking buildings and trams that go fast on lines in all directions in our lifetimes... but at some point in some places in the world, that's coming. Heck, China made enormous efforts to make their cities greener too. So have all the western countries.
Green tech, green energy, smart computers and automated industry.