I think that this is askew in perspective. It isn’t that people don’t care, but that their empathy and ideation has become polarized into two categories of feelings: their individualized consumptionism (buying a life) and everyone else’s generalized problems. Douglas Adams immortalized this in the S.E.P.: the Somebody Else’s Problem field. When the S.E.P. is applied to an area, any bizarre (uniqueness) becomes invisible to the masses unless it is ‘their problem’. In other words, merchants want us to be selfish individuals who only get interested in the things we are able to spend money on (hence the spiral of inner cities from white flight: no extra money, no commercial interest; no interest, no money).
I think this is yet another bit of evidence that we aren’t being destroyed by capitalism per se, but by good old Spanish Empire Consumerism. The modern world gets almost free energy, labor and plastic goods delivered instantly via a system of war-supported colonialism of the planet, re-branded as ‘freedom’ and endorsed by any religion that accepts donations (petro-dollars). The somnambulant public is driven by their lizard brainstems to override any executive function of the pre-frontal cortex (or it’s destroyed in a car crash or adolescent football game). In the end, we all end up in the Stone Age because everyone forgets how to actually do anything useful for themselves.
Following the money takes people and resources on a one-way ticket away from the useful land and future needs into the Thunderdome of instant gratification and profiteer worship.
When did it start? When the first priest/tribal chief/warlord demanded that all property and thought belonged to their church/family/weapons. Since then, it’s all just been smoke and mirrors around fanatical competitions and competitive fanaticisms. “A hero is somebody that gets other people killed.”