I think it's a self-serving fiction to claim "the people" don't care about politics; it's a big country, and i'm sure there *are* many people who don't care about politics. but i don't think that's the norm. most people, i think, simply don't hear anyone speaking to their experiences and concerns in language that means anything to them. and they are unable to see reflected anywhere in media or pop culture that *they're not alone* in that experience. there's a difference between alienation and isolation on the one hand, and apathy on the other. the kind of apathy you speak of is most common in the middle-class circles where most of us do our time; most people can't afford it. if they're inured to politics as presently practiced, it's mainly because they're smart enough to see that the game is fixed, and you're gonna get the same from flat albert as you will from dubyah. this is apathy?
so here's a question for you: if "the people" cared about politics, who on the left would they be listening to?