TagNew Jersey

Burning Man tries to cope with cash

But in an analysis of the organization’s tax filings by Charity Navigator, a New Jersey-based nonprofit watchdog group, the Black Rock Arts Foundation earned an “exceptionally poor” rating. The analyst found errors in reporting, a low revenue-to-grant ratio that showed artists receive on average 27 cents for every $1 spent – less than half the industry standard – and a conflict of interest involving David Best, a local artist best known for his intricate temples that rise at Burning Man.

Sandra Miniutti, an analyst at Charity Navigator who reviewed the filings at the request of The Chronicle, said donors to the foundation should be concerned by its poor practices.

“This is not a financially healthy organization,” Miniutti said. “If I were a donor, I’d think long and hard before I sent money their way.”

Full Story: SF Gate.

One Big Bang, or were there many?

The standard big bang theory says the universe began with a massive explosion, but the new theory suggests it is a cyclic event that consists of repeating big bangs.

“People have inferred that time began then, but there really wasn’t any reason for that inference,” said Neil Turok, a theoretical physicist at the University of Cambridge, “What we are proposing is very radical. It’s saying there was time before the big bang.”

Under his theory, published today in the journal Science with Paul Steinhardt at Princeton University in New Jersey, the universe must be at least a trillion years old with many big bangs happening before our own. With each bang, the theory predicts that matter keeps on expanding and dissipating into infinite space before another horrendous blast of radiation and matter replenishes it. “I think it is much more likely to be far older than a trillion years though,” said Prof Turok. “There doesn’t have to be a beginning of time. According to our theory, the universe may be infinitely old and infinitely large.”

Full Story: The Guardian.

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