Democrat Ex-Lawmakers Contracted to Lobby for North Korean Business Investment

Two former Democratic congressmen contracted with a lobbying firm to advocate on behalf of South Korean businesses operating factories in North Korea, according to recent filings.

Former Democratic Missouri Rep. Lacy Clay joined law firm and lobby shop Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman on Wednesday to lobby on behalf of the Corporate Association of the Gaesong Industrial Complex (CAGIC) at the direction of South Korean consultancy HC & Sons, according to a foreign agent filing with the Justice Department. Former Democratic Texas Rep. Greg Laughlin, who has been with Pillsbury since 2004 and served in Congress for 6 years before switching parties, began lobbying on behalf of CAGIC in December 2021, filings show.

Pillsbury began working with CAGIC in July 2021, filings show, signing a $675,000 contract to provide services including “general advocacy, including meetings with U.S. Executive and Legislative Branches.” The firm will also “provide information to CAGIC and advocate on its behalf,” filings show.

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Biden Asks Asian Countries to Release Oil Reserves as Administration Scrambles to Combat High Gas Prices: Report

Joe Biden

The Biden administration asked China, Japan, South Korea and India to tap into their emergency oil reserves as the president continues to grapple with rising gasoline prices, Reuters reported.

The effort to simultaneously release oil reserves represents a rebuke of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), the cartel that controls oil production throughout the Middle East, several anonymous sources familiar with the request told Reuters on Wednesday. OPEC has repeatedly rejected requests from President Joe Biden and other top administration officials to increase oil production amid rising gasoline prices.

The four Asian nations the president appealed to represent some of the largest energy consumers and greenhouse gas emitters, according to a University of Oxford database.

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Hackers Steal Customer Information in McDonald’s Cyberattack

McDonald's at sunset

Hackers obtained customer data from McDonald’s after breaching the company’s systems in the U.S., South Korea and Taiwan, according to The Wall Street Journal.

U.S. employees’ and franchisees’ contact information, seating capacity of U.S. locations and the dimensions of play areas at restaurants in the U.S were all exposed during the breach, McDonald’s said Friday, The Wall Street Journal reported. While McDonald’s said the hack didn’t cause disruptions at any of its locations, it vowed to launch an investigation into the breach and continue to invest in bolstering its cybersecurity protocol.

“McDonald’s will leverage the findings from the investigation as well as input from security resources to identify ways to further enhance our existing security measures,” the global fast food chain told U.S. employees in an internal message, according to the WSJ.

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Electric Vehicle Plant in Georgia Gets Word on Whether it Will Keep 2,500 Jobs Going

Georgia officials announced Sunday that SK Innovation will continue to operate its battery manufacturing plant in Jackson County, thus saving 2,600 jobs. Gov. Brian Kemp announced the news in an emailed statement.

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LG to Exit Phone Industry after Unprofitable Sales

LG Phone

Losses in the mobile phone business have driven the South Korean electronics company LG to quit the production of phones and instead focus more on profitable items including electric vehicle components, robotics and artificial intelligence.

Following approval from the company’s board, LG on Monday announced the changes and expects to fully exit the phone industry by July.

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