theNewsWorthy: Wednesday, December 26th, 2018


(in less than 10 minutes!)


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All the news stories mentioned in today's episode are listed with links below, so you can spend as much -- or as little -- time as you want perusing the latest happenings...

Midterm Elections:  During this year’s midterm elections, the Republicans strengthened their majority in the Senate while the Democrats took over the majority in the House of Representatives. A record number of women will be sworn in on January 3rd, including the first two Muslim women elected to the House.
Read more: FOX News, USA Today, The Washington Post NPR, The Hill, BuzzFeed

Kavanaugh Controversy & Confirmation:  Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in as a Supreme Court Justice in October. During Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford said that he assaulted her when they were in high school; Kavanaugh denied it. It might have been the most contentious Supreme Court nomination in U.S. history.
Read more: Reuters, WSJ, Time

North Korea & U. S. Meeting:  President Trump made history when he met with Kim Jong-un face-to-face in Singapore in June. The two discussed denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. Supporters say it’s a step toward peace, but critics say Kim Jong-un is known to lie and manipulate. Trump hopes to have a second meeting in early 2019.
Read more: USA Today, CNN, FOX News, NYT, The Hill

Tragedies & Disasters:  California faced the deadliest and most destructive wildfires on record in 2018. Hurricanes Florence and Michael wreaked havoc on the east coast. Nearly 2,000 were evacuated when Hawaii’s Mount Kilauea volcano erupted in May. There was a school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida in February,  which was one of the deadliest in U.S. history. It prompted students to launch the ‘March for Our Lives’ movement, which favors stronger gun-control laws.
Read more: AccuWeather, CNN, The Weather Channel, Vox

Thai Cave Rescue:  The world was captivated by a youth soccer team trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand in July. One rescue diver died, but ultimately the entire team and their coach survived the 18-day ordeal. Thailand's Navy Seal wrote on Facebook that they don't know if it was "a miracle or science or what." 
Read more: CBS News, CNN
Apple Hits $1 Trillion:  Apple became the first U.S. company to reach $1 trillion dollars in market value in August. Though tech stocks have dropped recently. The top five most valuable companies are all in tech: Apple, Amazon, Alphabet (Google's parent company), Microsoft and Facebook.
Read more: CNBC, WSJ, Yahoo Finance
Facebook Privacy Issues:  CNET calls the Cambridge Analytica debacle the top tech story of the year after Facebook improperly shared 87 million people’s personal data with the consulting firm.
Read more: CNET

Net Neutrality:  The Federal Communications Commission rolled back laws meant to protect an open and fair internet, though critics say net neutrality stifles innovation. So far, no major changes have been made. Some state lawmakers are trying to pass their own net neutrality laws.
Read more: Wired
World Cup: 2018’s most Googled topic was the World Cup, which makes sense considering 3.4 billion people – nearly half the world’s population – tuned in to watch in June and July (France won!). The next World Cup will be held in Qatar in 2022. Also this year, it was decided the U. S., Mexico and Canada will host in 2026.
Read more: NPR, CBS Sports
Mega Jackpots:  The Mega Millions lottery jackpot made history when it reached $1.5 billion. It made news, too: says it’s their most-viewed story of the year. The winning ticket was sold in South Carolina.
Read more: CBS News
Royal Wedding:  Meghan Markle and Prince Harry got married in May. The royal wedding was televised, with millions of Americans waking up early to tune in. The celebration was praised for its diversity. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are now expecting their first child.
Read more: PopSugar, CNN, Telegraph, The Guardian

Yanny vs. Laurel: An audio clip that made the rounds this year stirred up quite a debate. Some people said it sounded like “Yanny” and others were sure it said “Laurel.” Experts say what you hear depends on how you listen and which frequencies are amplified.
Read more: Mashable, BuzzFeed

More 'Year in Review' lists here:
Google, CBS News, Business Insider, CNET, Insider