You gotta hand it to Big Oil. They know a good tactic when they see one.

My friend Kevin Grandia wrote about a memo obtained by Greenpeace that shows the president of the American Petroleum Institute (API) asking API members (big oil companies) to recruit oil-friendly people to attend rallies with the intent of disrupting and shutting down actual dialogue between members of Congress and their constituents on the serious issue of energy policy.

Does that sound familiar? Kind of like what the health insurance industry is doing with their pals in the Right by encouraging the the angry, boisterous, not well-informed, bitter masses at health care town hall meetings all around the country?

Kevin is collecting stories from people who attend the events the API is targeting. If you live near one of the following areas and attend one, send any news or tips to Kevin at

Houston, Tx.

Perry, Ga.

Detroit, Mich.

Roswell, N.M.

Greensboro, N.C.

Farmington, N.M.

Ohio (venue being finalized)

Greeley, Colo.

Nashville, Tenn.

Indiana (venue being finalized)

Bismarck, N.D.

Tampa, Fla.

Sioux Falls, S.D.

Greenville, S.C.

Anchorage, Alaska

Joliet, Ill.

Charleston, W.V.

Fairfax, Va.

Philadelphia, Penn.

Lincoln, Ne.

Missouri (venue being determined)

Arkansas (venue being determined)

I can't say I'm surprised by this news. Big Oil isn't exactly known to play by the rules. If a truth can be bent, they'll spend a million dollars bending it.

You should check out Kevin's  blog DeSmogBlog -- it's one of the smartest climate change blogs on the web. He's also the genius behind Coal-Is-Clean (which turns into Coal-is-Dirty).

Are you on TwitterFollow me (@sheagunther) there, I give good tweets.

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Shea Gunther is a podcaster, writer, and entrepreneur living in Portland, Maine. He hosts the popular podcast "Marijuana Today Daily" and was a founder of Renewable Choice Energy, the country's leading provider of wind credits and Green Options. He plays a lot of ultimate frisbee and loves bad jokes.

Big Oil plans astroturf campaign
Taking a cue from the health care industry, some members of the American Petroleum Institute plan to infiltrate and disturb energy policy town hall meetings.