MPB Affiliate Says Members Are ‘Partners’ With Walmart And That Program ‘Guaranteed’ Not To Be Scam; Separate Promo Depicts Michelle Obama As Experiencing Oval Office Gas Attack After Sampling ‘Beans’ At Sam’s Club

This promo for MPB Today claims affiliates become "partners" with Walmart and that business owners are "Granted FREE Groceries" for referring business to the MLM program. The promo appeared last night on a site that is heavily advertising the program -- even after Walmart's name had gone missing from the landing page on MPB Today's website.

UPDATED 10:42 A.M. EDT (U.S.A.) Using the soundtrack from the legendary rock band Heart’s 1985 hit single “What about love,” an affiliate of MPB Today is claiming on YouTube that the company’s members become “partners” with Walmart and that MPB’s multilevel-marketing (MLM) program is “Guaranteed” not to be a scam.

Heart could not be contacted immediately to determine if the MPB affiliate was authorized to use the song, which features the voice of Ann Wilson, in a sales promotion for an MLM program tied to a Florida-based grocery company known as Southeastern Delivery.

Walmart has not responded to a request last week from the PP Blog that asked the company to comment on legal and regulatory issues surrounding the use of its name in promotions for MPB Today. The Blog specifically asked Walmart if it knew that MPB Today was using the company name in sales pitches and that at least one affiliate had claimed that Walmart gift cards distributed by MPB to its purported customers could be converted to Walmart prepaid Visa cards, which can be used the same as cash.

The Blog also asked Walmart if it was affiliated with MPB Today and whether it approved of the use of its brand in the MPB Today MLM program.

On Tuesday, the MPB Today website removed images of a Walmart store and business titans Donald Trump and Warren Buffet. It was unclear if Walmart, Trump and Buffet had forced the removal.

Even after MPB Today removed the images, an affiliate promo appeared online last night that claimed MPB Today members were “partners” with Walmart. Ads for MPB Today have targeted Food Stamp recipients, senior citizens, Ponzi scheme victims, foreclosure subjects, people of faith and members of the public who are unhappy with the administration of President Barack Obama.

One animated ad for MPB Today depicted First Lady Michelle Obama as having experienced a gas attack after sampling “beans” at Sam’s Club. Sam’s Club operates under the Walmart flag.

This animated pitch for MPB Today depicts First Lady Michelle Obama as having an embarrassing gas attack in the Oval Office after sampling "beans" at a Sam's Club. In the promo, Michelle Obama later gets knocked out by a drunken Hillary Clinton, who is portrayed as a Nazi. President Obama gives Clinton a left-handed Nazi salute in the promo.

The ad, which portrayed President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as Nazis, potentially could alienate customers regardless of their political views. Why an affiliate would imply in an ad that MPB Today prefers Obama opponents as customers is unclear. Such a caustic ad potentially could injure multiple brands because MPB affiliates have claimed Walmart is affiliated with the firm and the name of Sam’s Club appears in the anti-Obama promo.

MPB Today operator Gary Calhoun has a poor record with the Better Business Bureau for his operation of a previous company, United Pro Media. The company’s predecessor firm, Trim International, was ordered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to stop violating federal law in its marketing of a product positioned as a treatment for Lou Gehrig’s Disease, cancer and other severe medical conditions.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said last week that it was conducting a review into claims made about MPB Today. The agency said yesterday that its review was ongoing.

MPB Today is being marketed on social-media sites. It also is being marketed on at least three forums that are infamous for promoting Ponzi schemes.

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8 Responses to “MPB Affiliate Says Members Are ‘Partners’ With Walmart And That Program ‘Guaranteed’ Not To Be Scam; Separate Promo Depicts Michelle Obama As Experiencing Oval Office Gas Attack After Sampling ‘Beans’ At Sam’s Club”

  1. Quick notes:

    Have now seen a claim that MPB Today sells “prepaid groceries” and that “This grocer is so legitimate that they are legally authorized to accept payment via EBT. EBT is an abbreviation for Electronic Benefits Transfer which is the method now used for distributing the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). As of Oct. 1, 2008, SNAP is the new name for the federal Food Stamp Program. One word —> LEGITIMATE !”

    The clear implication of the claim is that, because the government approved Southeastern Delivery to accept Food Stamps, the MLM program also passes muster. The word “voucher” also is used on the pitch page.

    Also have seen a video pitch in which an MPB affiliate is videotaped cashing his check from Southeastern Delivery at the drive-through window of an FDIC-insured bank — “It’s all about the ‘Benjamins,'” he says — before proceeding to Walmart to test his gift card. At Walmart, he plucks a copy of a novel by Glenn Beck off the shelf. At this point, “lightning bolts” dubbed into the video strike the man, and he says he has to leave the store, presumably because the experience of being struck by fake lightning while holding a Glenn Beck book he picked at “random” from the shelf was unnerving.

    “This store is kinda creeping me out,” he says.

    The man then proceeds to successfully pay for his purchase using the Walmart card. He next goes to a taco shop that is not connected to Walmart, and attempts — as an apparent gag — to see if the shop will accept the Walmart card. It does not, of course, so the man pays in cash.

    The workers at the taco store appear to be confused about why the man is attempting to pay for his purchase with a Walmart card. Images of the workers are captured in the video, which also captured the image of at least one Walmart worker who was running the cash register. The voice of a worker at the FDIC-insured bank also is captured in the video.

    It is unclear if any of the workers fully comprehended what was going on — i.e, whether they understood they were being taped for a commercial for MPB Today. It is not immediately clear if Walmart, the taco store or the bank have policies about videotaping/audiotaping employees on company property and using their images/remarks in a commercial.

    So, in effect, the video to promote MPB Today features a bank employee, a Walmart employee and at least three employees of the taco restaurant.

    At the end of the video, the affiliate thanks “mostly the lord,” along with Walmart and the taco shop, for providing the “lighting” for the video.

    Two checks from Southeastern — dated July 9 and July 12 — are shown in the video, along with two Walmart gift cards.

    Patrick

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  2. Patrick, yeah, I watched the same video. It was comical, at best!

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  3. Definitely recruited from the ASD database. Remember some of their off-the-wall video’s and outlandish claims? Same pig, different dress. I bet Andy is kicking himself for not thinking this one up. After all he was such a visionary, and astute businessman.

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  4. What amazes me is the fact that people who are ASSUMING this is a scam, are the people who have not actually spent the time to read the homepage. This is the best idea ever! How many grocery delivery companies actually spend the time to do this? And where on the site does it say they are “AFFILIATED” with Wal-Mart? It actually says “MPB ARE A CUSTOMER OF WAL-MART” Maybe some people just need to learn to spend time learning about the product before they blast it! READ THE ACTUAL HOMEPAGE PEOPLE!

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  5. Hello V. Bell,

    See this story:

    http://patrickpretty.com/2010/09/08/images-of-walmart-donald-trump-warren-buffet-removed-from-mpb-today-website-testimonials-go-missing-too-affiliate-bashes-obama-hillary-clinton-in-promo/

    Patrick

    V. Bell: What amazes me is the fact that people who are ASSUMING this is a scam, are the people who have not actually spent the time to read the homepage.

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  6. V. Bell: And where on the site does it say they are “AFFILIATED” with Wal-Mart?

    And where on this site does it say the MPB site says MPB is affiliated with Walmart ????

    If I read it correctly, the headline at the beginning of this thread says quite clearly: “MPB AFFILIATE Says Members Are ‘Partners’ With Walmart”

    Or are you suggesting we’re about to start playing a game of “Oh, no, WE didn’t say it, it was one of those over enthusiastic members who said it” À la Andy Bowdoins Congressional medal.

    Maybe it’s just me, but when I think “ethical company” I think about a company which would act INSTANTLY to have such blatantly untrue information removed from any of its’ members’ sites,

    PARTICULARLY when the repercussions of the misuse of a third parties’ name will reflect on the company, not the member.

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