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Seth Abramson @SethAbramson
, 26 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
Rep. Castro says we'll soon learn "disturbing things" in the Russia probe. New York Magazine says, "We should probably be giving far more weight to the possibility the darkest interpretation of Trump’s relations with Russia is true."

So what will the snarks say if that happens?
2/ That's a serious question. There are thousands of Twitter progressives who know *nothing* about the Russia probe—they've put *zero* time into it—and all day they tell people not to listen to those of us who've handled criminal cases before and see how bad this is going to get.
3/ I worry that when this turns out to be exactly as bad as I (and others) have said, we'll be told, "Well, you guessed right." *No*—that's not going to fly. The evidence is available *now* and we can (and must) analyze it *now* and we can prepare for obvious eventualities *now*.
4/ Criminal investigations aren't about guesswork—they're about research, connecting data, and developing a theory of the case.

Many people who are *not* working for Bob Mueller are doing this right now, and I see way too many progressives waving off any attention paid to that.
5/ Look, this is an *unusual* situation: biggest federal criminal investigation of our lives; a Congress that's totally broken; a cadre of federal agents whose work is totally secret; a media that doesn't know how to operate in this sort of atmosphere except let pundits chew air.
6/ We're also in the digital age—which means online research is far easier to do than it's ever been, and because so many people are online we have many people who are attorneys and investigators willing to do the work. And because of what's at stake, many *want* to do that work.
7/ But because the story is so massive and overwhelming, it's easy to say, "I don't want to deal with this—I want to wait until Mueller issues a report and then NBC tells me what it says." And that's fine—for *you*. But some of us don't react that way when our nation is attacked.
8/ I don't go around calling myself a "Russia expert." After the exhausting Dem primaries, I did very little writing during the general. I thought I'd go back to doing other things. Then I discovered what Trump had done and—like thousands of you—I said, "I have to do something."
9/ Every day, many dozens of Americans from all walks of life email me saying, "How can I help?" Security experts offer explanations of complex concepts; attorneys check in with me on legal theories; and folks from all professions do their own research and send me possible leads.
10/ I get why it's easier to say "let big media do it—even though they blew the primaries, blew the general, and are largely blowing it now." I get why people upset about the primaries are still upset at those who favored a different candidate than they did. But this is a crisis.
11/ I'm angry about the primaries, like many of you. Angry about the general. Angry at a lot of things and a lot of people. I feel failed by Congress and—yes—by my political party.

But I began doing what I do now because I decided that it was a small thing I could do to resist.
12/ No citizen or freelance journalist is going to be perfect—we don't have the resources big media does, even if we do have the sort of risk-acceptance, doggedness, gumption, and problem-solving ethos many whose paycheck is dependent upon a corporate media employer do not have.
13/ I think it'd be great if we could accept that Congress and major media aren't up to the task of addressing this situation in a way that honors its exigencies. And it'd be great if we could *also* accept that average folks like me and you are now going to do our best to help.
14/ Sometimes that best will be inadequate, or inartful, or a bit sloppy, or confusing, or annoying—but with a nation at stake, the one thing you can be certain of is that the work will be *well-intended*. So maybe we could give one another a little more slack than we have been.
15/ When I see how many people are out there spending much of their day just snarking on others, my reaction is, "What nation are you *watching* right now? We're in a crisis—people are trying to *help*. Are you literally going to fiddle an ironic little tune as the nation burns?"
16/ If it'd matter, I'd happily concede that those riled up about this feed are better than me in every way. I'd tell them, "You're smarter than me, more honest, more qualified, more perceptive, more knowledgeable, more experienced." Then I'd ask, "So what are you doing to HELP?"
17/ Because the fact is, I go to the Twitter feeds of the snarks, cranks, and trolls on the *left* who are so angry at certain resisters on the *left* and what I usually find is that they're doing *nothing* but attacking what *others* are doing. And that's so damn easy, everyone.
18/ If you're attacking what others are doing, you don't have to face what you're *not* doing.

If you attack someone else as in some way *false*, you don't have to go out and *prove* to your countrymen that you're *honest and true* when it comes to defending America from Trump.
19/ A lot of people don't know it, but I have more than one other job. I'm a professor, but I'm also an editor and author. Those are jobs. They take time. So too does being a good husband and friend. But I've made this feed a huge part of my life because this is a fucking crisis.
20/ I became a journalist about 25 years ago, at Dartmouth, where I wrote my first article for the nation's oldest college newspaper at the age of 17. Since then, a freelancer. I came back to it during the Trump presidency because I thought *maybe* I could use that skill to help.
21/ But of course I don't have the same credentials as a full-time journalist—how could I? I chose to do other things, like the law. Which I did for nearly a decade in total, and only teach now. As with journalism, I thought that *maybe* I could use that skill to be of some help.
22/ And yes, being a poet and a professor who teaches writing—among many other things—does help. I feel like I'm good at condensing information into tweets because poets are trained to condense and professors are trained at taking complicated data and making it easier to digest.
23/ So these skills, too, I tried to figure out how to bring to bear. And when I looked at what I thought I could offer during a crisis, I saw my background as a lawyer, freelance journo, editor, professor, and poet and thought a feed like this *could* be a good use of my skills.
24/ I'd ask those whose response to a crisis is to sit on the sidelines and attack others to simply ask *themselves* what skills they can *hopefully* and *generatively* bring to bear when their nation is in a crisis. Then do whatever it is that leads you to the very best you can.
25/ And you know what? You're going to suck sometimes. But I promise not to say you're motivated by greed, ego, vanity, or anything else that's particularly sad when it motivates us in a time of crisis. And I'll hope maybe you can see clear to have some faith in others in return.
PS/ My hope is that by writing this and "saving" it—putting it atop my "likes"—I can move on and permanently ignore the cranks, trolls, snarks, stalkers, and creeps, as well as the *unbelievable* amount of *friendly fire* the left is allowing amidst its ranks.

So: back to work.
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