i guess this is 2 years old now, so you may not get around to reading this, but i thought this was a very nice piece. i'll need to get around to the other eight in this series. i realize it's mostly about walking, but if you want to know more about what riding the rail is like for a daily commute, please have a look at http://lamtadiary.blogspot.com. yes, it's my blog, but i think you might enjoy it.
as a discretionary rider, i would never have ridden for 10 years on the mta if the trains weren't there. all of the same problems that plague any proposed rail system, mainly the bizarrely uniform population density throughout the city, also plague any improvements to the bus system. you can add extra buses, of course, but that doesn't improve the trip time; and i've had several instances where the next bus actually passes the one i boarded. creating bus lanes is nearly impossible given the car-centric nature of the city's residents. so, in short, i'm an advocate for trains and while i'm sure the plaintiffs in the lawsuit you mentioned had good intentions, i don't think their solutions have worked.