The ideas are pretty familiar but I nonetheless really like this section from Zizek’s Trouble in Paradise, pg 86. I’m trying to use the notion of cognitive triage to explore how obsessive self examination subtracts from time and energy actionable for working with others to address social issues.
A series of situations that characterize today’s society perfectly exemplify this type of superego-individualization: ecology, political correctness and poverty. The predominant ecological discourse which addresses us as a priori guilty, indebted to mother nature, under the constant pressure of the ecological superego-agency, addresses us as individuals: What did you do today to repay your debt to nature? Did you put all newspapers into the proper recycling bin? And all the bottles of beer or cans of Coke? Did you use your car when you could have used a bike or public transport? Did you use air conditioning instead of just opening the windows? 49 The ideological stakes of such individualization are easily discernible: I get lost in my own self-examination instead of raising much more pertinent global questions about our entire industrial civilisation.