I think political apathy is created at two levels 1) underclasses and poor people are actually existing in society which seems alien from political structures and are thought and accept different survival strategies while accepting their poverty as natural. 2) People are thought to be individuals and believe by organizing and reoganising the self they can become liberated(politics seems to have little to do with their personal troubles which isnt true!) hence the rise of modern consumerism. People use products, courses and all sorts of things you can attach to yourself personally to improve you life, this doesnt always work. Basically there has been a breakdown of social bonds and people are becoming more atomised and reliant on the self and consumption of goods for the self to try deal with their social problems.
For example the foods produced in western society which are the cheapest and easiest to access are fatty fast foods while we have longer working hours and less time to prepare food: this is a political and social problem. Yet we are all thought and accept that we need to change our lifestyles, run around the block and buy more rare and expensive alternative foods. Thus we have an individualistic consumer movement of lifestylists and not a political movement.
Adorno, Marcuse .... the frankfurt school