People ride the bus where it makes sense. They don't where it doesn't.
Theoretically I could ride the bus to the grocery store. It'll cost me $1.75 each way. It's 4 and a half miles. And the last time I tried it I waited ten minutes, recognized the bus wasn't coming, started walking and was in sight of the store by the time I saw a bus. It was literally running 45 minutes late. As in, it's supposed to come by every 12 minutes and it didn't run at all. For 45 minutes.
I can take LA Metro to work. I can walk a quarter mile, get on a different bus (that I hope isn't late), ride it two stops, get on one train, ride two stops, transfer through Union Station, get on another train, ride seventeen stops, get on a bus (that I hope isn't late), ride nine stops and then walk a quarter mile. It takes two and a half hours. Or, I can skip that first bus ride, walk two miles to the train, and then instead of getting on the last bus I can get on their "protected bus lane" (and hope it isn't late) and then ride it eight stops, get on another bus (and hope it isn't late) and then ride nine stops and walk a quarter mile. It takes three hours.
I can Lyft. I go from "major freeway" to "major freeway" to "major road." Without traffic it's half an hour. With, it's an hour. Or I can bike. I effectively ride from "major road" to "major road" despite having a sixteen mile commute. Uphill, in a 100 degree headwind, with five (5!) detours, that ride takes me an hour and sixteen minutes.
ST3 is gonna cost about 54 billion dollars. It's going to take light rail all the way from the airport (where it already is) up to the park'n'ride by my house 18 miles away. And once it's running, it'll get me to the airport in two and a half hours.
I can drive it in 45 minutes.
You're not wrong. Public transport is theoretically more dense and consistent than driving a car. But like every other sanctimonious mutherfucker that says "take the bus" my answer is "have you tried that lately?"
Here's one of my local crazy people from the river. It rained a lot in January so they were all adrift and looking for shelter. She got on the third bus in the odyssey, got confused, started screaming for "MAMA!" and refused to sit down or get out of the way. So we all got to wait 45 minutes for Metro to dispatch another bus for us to get on. And watch as LAPD forceably removed her from the bus, screaming and terrified, only to shut the bus down where it sat as a "crime scene."
Yeah. Those guys whose commute went from 20min to 40 are gonna eat this shit up.