High rankings can still be achieved on Google but it does take time and money. Usually I still get my clients in the top10 for whatever search terms they want. However, I never guarantee anything. Remember ultimately being a SEO means being one step ahead of the search engines. As long as Google still shows natural listings there will be a way to rank at top of these listings.
However, I am telling more and more clients to use Yahoo because the results are better and ranking makes more logical sense.