This thread prompted me to relisten to an interview with the documentary film maker Adam Curtis on Chapo Trap House. I highly recommend listening to the entire interview, as there are many quotable moment, but this is one that stands out in particular. Also, highly recommend watching his films Hypernormalization and The Century of the Self.
SO in answer to your question, what you need is a powerful vision of the future. With all its dangers. But it is also quite thrilling. It will be an escape from the staticness of the world we have today. And to do that, you’ve got to engage with the giant forces of power that now run the world, at the moment. And the key thing is that in confronting those powers, and trying to transform the world you might lose a lot. This is a sort of forgotten idea. Is that actually you surrender yourself up to a big idea and in the the process you might lose something but you’d actually gain a bigger sense, because you change the world for the better. I know it sounds soppy, But this is the forgotten thing about politics. Is that you give up some of your individualism to something bigger than yourself. You surrender yourself - and it’s a lost idea.
I haven’t quite integrated this sentiment into my life, growing up in the arch-individualistic milieu of the 80s and 90s in the United States. I do think real change extends beyond the paradigm of personal responsibility and consumer choice that is so prevalent in neoliberalism. Making the “right” choices such as buying an electric car will only do so much when, as was pointed out 100 companies are responsible for 71% of all emissions.