Idk, aesthetically I prefer the new changes. I think it makes the page look cleaner and less cluttered.
And maybe the average user prefers ads over the organic results. Maybe they feel they can trust those results more than our "spammy" organic results. At least the ads have Google's stamp of approval, a trusted authority.
I sometimes wonder if Google will eventually charge all sites to be included in it's index. How many of you would pay to have a shot in the world's highest quality and farthest-reaching search index as opposed to being left out?