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Patrick Goldstein and James Rainey
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James Cameron on BP's handling of the oil spill: 'Those morons don't know what they're doing'

June 3, 2010 | 11:54 am

Jim_cameron I don't know about you, but personally, I feel that I can sleep better at night knowing that the indefatigable James Cameron is always at the ready, always on the case, always fully caffeinated, no matter what the crisis is at hand. Apparently making the biggest-grossing, game-changing movie of all time isn't enough to put this world-class filmmaker's insatiable energy at rest.

Cameron has already emerged as an outspoken environmentalist and defender of the Amazon rain forest. He's already on the science team for the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory. He's already -- gasp -- documented the unearthing of what is alleged to be the tomb of Jesus. But this is a man who never rests. A day after participating in a meeting at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Washington designed to "brainstorm" solutions for the disastrous BP gulf oil spill, Cameron took the stage at the All-Things Digital technology conference, where he blasted away at British Petroleum, saying that he has been "watching what's happening in the gulf and thinking those morons don't know what they're doing."

It turns out that Cameron offered to help BP and the U.S. government in dealing with the oil spill, but his volunteer efforts were ignored. As is widely known, Cameron isn't just an amiable dunce do-gooder. He's helped develop deep-sea submersible equipment and other undersea ocean technology for a series of documentaries he made involving undersea shipwrecks, including the Titanic and the Bismarck.

As this report from Reuters notes, Cameron thinks his help is needed, since his team of experts has  operated underwater vehicles and electronic optical fiber systems, even if the undersea work didn't involve drilling for oil. "I know really, really, really smart people that work typically at depths much greater than what that well is at. Most importantly, they know the engineering that it requires to get something done at that depth."

All I can tell you is that it's time to let Cameron and his really, really, really smart cohorts loose and see if they can make a dent in this growing ecological disaster. With Spike Lee down in Louisiana, updating his Hurricane Katrina documentary, going on CNN and blasting BP ("It if was up to me, they would be going to the hoosegow, to the slammer," Lee told Anderson Cooper), it's only a matter of time before the oil spill reaches true catastrophic proportions. I mean, wherever Spike goes, doom and gloom follows, as any New York Knicks fan could tell you. 

The time is clearly overdue to give Cameron a special presidential appointment as our new Disaster Guru. Give him some money, give him some technology, give him some troops. Hell, give him an honorary Oscar, if that's what it takes. Let's face it. It's time for some can-do spirit in the gulf and if anyone is overflowing with can-do zeal, it's Jim Cameron. I say step out of the way and let a real man do a real man's business.

Photo: James Cameron at Seoul Digital Forum in Seoul, South Korea, in May. Credit: Lee Jin-man / Associated Press

 

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