It ain't so. I'm not referring to the argument that Karma will turn out to be just as bad as NPO and friends. That's a different argument altogether which I won't be taking up. Instead, I'll be looking at a different angle - what this game really is.
The fact of the matter is, Cybernations is much more of a political simulation than a war simulation. It's fairly easy to go months upon months without engaging in a single war, but the political process of arriving to that point goes on nearly every day. Negotiating pacts and deals with other alliances is a huge part of this game, probably the most original content that can be attributed to the game (sorry Admin, I like the mechanics, but I think most people are here for the politics). And all of that politicking is aimed at leading the alliance in some particular direction - whether it be to simply establish a community, to be a diplomatic leader, or to be a heavy-weight in terms of nation strength and political capital. Therefore, taking down the NPO doesn't actually change any of those goals, unless taking down the NPO was the sole purpose of your alliance (see: Vox Populi). For everyone else, life will go on.
Yes, admittedly, the political atmosphere is expected to be quite different in the coming months, but the rules haven't changed. The political process will probably stay the same, alliances will still make friends with other alliances, and there will be tiffs between two alliances every once in a while. There will probably be some group (or groups) of alliances plotting to take the #1 seat, either in total NS or in a more political sense, but that aspect isn't a whole lot different than what has been happening all along. The NPO was simply good at it, at least up to a point. The fact that other alliances are now in a better position to get that #1 spot doesn't really change anything about CN, it'll just make the game more interesting because the short-term "winner" cannot be clearly predicted at this point.
So in the end, I'm not really sure why everyone is claiming, "OMG, IT'S A NEW ERA!!!1!one!!!" because nothing has inherently changed in how the game is played. If someone wants to make an argument that there is a new era in CN, they'll have to make a more compelling argument than "NPO is no longer #1." The season may have changed, but the sun still rises in the east.