In the 1950's and 1960's, the Soviet Union (USSR) was more powerful, or at least as powerful as USA. However, the people of USSR obviously lived a much worse life than American people.
Furthermore, the history has proved again that without a good political system, all ecconomical prosperity are just short-life.
I really don't care whether or not China, as a country, is powerful and strong. The only meaningful thing is the people can live happily and easily.