If you're one of the lucky (and I use the term loosely here, given the driving conditions in southern California) people who get to use the carpool lanes in LA, the least of your worries should be 'Prius backlash' from other drivers. You should be more worried about statements like the following from transportation experts.
"There's not enough excess capacity to absorb the hybrids," said James Moore, director of the University of Southern California's transportation engineering program. "I think the foreseeable outcome here is that the congestion advantage we traditionally attribute to (carpool) lanes will disappear."
The state will need new legislation to keep the carpool lane 'perk' beyond Jan, 2008. Once the limit of passes has been reached, the legistors will be keeping a close eye on how all those extra cars affect the car pool lane. And unless they have switched over to a hybrid themselves, they may take comments like the above very seriously, indeed.