Faux Activism: Recruiting Anti-Chevron Protesters for $85 a Head

Faux Activism: Recruiting Anti-Chevron Protesters for $85 a Head

In March, a federal judge in New York ruled that the 20-year-long legal campaign against Chevron (CVX) over oil pollution in Ecuador was actually a bribe-fueled fraud. This week in Texas, anti-Chevron activists recruited phony paid protesters to picket the company’s annual shareholder meeting.

Some people apparently don’t learn from experience.

Several dozen demonstrators gathered outside the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum in Midland to condemn Chevron, which held its annual meeting on Wednesday at the historic site in the west Texas oil patch. Humberto Piaguaje, one of the indigenous Ecuadorian leaders involved in a massive lawsuit against the oil company, helped lead the sign-waving, slogan-chanting cohort. To fill out the ranks of the demonstration, a Los Angeles-based production company offered local residents $85 apiece to serve as what the firm described in a recruiting e-mail as “extras/background people.”

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