You may have seen him on one of those late-nite paid TV Info-Commercials, right between the AB-Buster and "self-help Guru" Tony Robbins. He is self-claimed "self-made multi-millionaire" Don Lapre. Lapre has been hawking his "fool-proof money making kit" for years. But before you rush out your hard-earned money, please educate yourself and read the following article.
On the shows, Don Lapre is always wired and hyper like he just drank 500 gallons of coffee and every other word is either "incredible" or simply amazing". He seems to have his fake passion and fake perkiness down to a science. His newest co-host is supermodel Cindy Margolis who drools over Lapre's every word as they make goo-goo eyes at each other.
Don Lapre tells his "rags-to-riches" story as a down-and-out painter who, while painting houses of other millionaires, "stumbled onto a fool-proof money making system". And Don Lapre claimed to be using the "secrets" that he "accidentally stumbled upon" to make millions upon millions of dollars. Now Don Lapre is willing to share his "fool-proof secrets" with the rest of us us (for a price of course) because he feels sorry for us because we do not live the "paradise life" he is living. Gee, how nice of him! Well, despite what Mr. Lapre may have you believe, you do not make millions of dollars by accident (unless you hit a mega-lottery ore are lucky enough to have a filthy rich relative name you as the sole heir to their fortunes), nor do you make millions of dollars by "stumbling onto a fool-proof secret".
Here is how Webster's define "Stumble":
Inflected Form(s): stumbled; stumbling /-b(&-)li[ng]/
Etymology: Middle English, probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian dialect stumle to stumble; akin to Old Norse stemma to hinder -- more at STEM
1 a : to fall into sin or waywardness b : to make an error : BLUNDER c : to come to an obstacle to belief
2 : to trip in walking or running
3 a : to walk unsteadily or clumsily b : to speak or act in a hesitant or faltering manner
4 a : to come unexpectedly or by chance b : to fall or move carelessly
1 : to cause to stumble : TRIP
2 : BEWILDER, CONFOUND
- stumbler /-b(&-)l&r/ noun
- stumblingly /-b(&-)li[ng]-lE/ adverb
Don Lapre's biggest boast is "I am making $80,000 a week, week after week after week, all from a tiny one bedroom apartment". Well common sense makes me ask, if he was really making $80,000 a week, week after week, why in the world is he still in a "tiny one bedroom apartment"? The big cheese of the program was the 1-900 business and Lapre preached about "untold billions and billions" that was being made in that industry. The package was advertised for $39.95 and was previously being sold for $99.95 and before that, was being sold for $149.95 for the same contents.
Being a young lad at the time, I was very naive and gullible and eagerly rushed out my money order, which including shipping and handling, was around $50 or so. A few weeks later, the package arrived and the contents were quite disappointing, to say the very least. I felt that Don Lapre gravely "mis-represented the truth" and engaged in misleading advertising practice. I found out from my best friend's father, who was a lawyer back then, who told me that Don Lapre technically did not lie. He did not tell the whole truth, but he technically did not lie, because the package was delivered. It was a matter of us interpreting what he was saying, because even though the package was not what //we// interpreted it to be, Don Lapre never out-right said it would be.
Don Lapre preached you could make a fortune buying and selling, but his guide on buying and selling basically told us to buy items at a garage sale, clean them up, and hold our own garage sale. Any moron could have told me the same thing and really insulted my intelligence. His "free ads" manuel (it was actually more of a leaflet) told us how to use your printer and make your own ads and post them around town. Once again any idiot could have said the same thing.
The "big cheese" of Don Lapre's money-making scam that he hyped on over and over was the 1-900 business and Lapre claimed that "untold billions" were being made in that industry. Well that may have been true, if we were back in the early 1990s when the 1-900 numbers were first being introduced and before the public knew better. But today the 1-900 business is a dying breed and have lost a lot of credability when the "phone-a-w***e" and the "dial-a-psychic" craze took over the 1-900 industry in the late 80's and early 90's.
Even today those type of businesses are leaving the 1-900 lines in favor of the 1-800 lines that require credit cards because of the reputation that 1-900 businesses have (and rightfully so) as well as having to eat losses when people call the 1-900 lines, then dispute the charges with their phone company and most of the time, the 1-900 business does not even try to persue, because if you take into consideration the court costs, collection agency fees and other litigation costs, it would have cost more than theyt would have collected, and it would have cost more than they would have collected and is not worth it, in their eyes.
But that's something the Mr. Lapre very convienently failed to leave out!
Also what Mr. Lapre conveniently failed to leave out, was the cost to lease a 1-900 line. The costs averaged about $750 per year, per line and Don's company would collect about 15% off the top, for "maintenance and service fees" as well as other hidden charges. That was just to lease the line. That does not take into consideration the advertising rates, as well as other "hidden fees". Mr Lapre would agree to set you up with the 1-900 lines and supply the service for the lines, but only if you agreed to have his company supply the service and agreed to a 2 year contract.
Then came the flood of phone calls from Don Lapre's telemarketers who called at all times during the day and evening trying to get me to purchase new services that "Don didn't have time to mention in TV or in the manuels". I was also getting other calls from other telemarkerts that I had not been getting before, so that makes me wonder if Don Lapre sold my information to them.
I have invested $39.95 and did not make one cent off of his "fool-proof secrets". I felt that he was quite dis-honest when advertising his package and wonder how he can sleep at night or look his family in the eye, or even look at himself in the mirror. So I was out $39.95 and had very little to show for it, except for a "money making kit" that seemed to have been written from a 4th grade perspective. Now I am older and wiser than I once was and am not so quick to part with my hard earned money and am not so quick to be taken in by a smiling con-man. Also Don Lapre stated that the testamonials never recieved 1 cent for sharing their stories, but he never said anything about "non-monetary compensation".
I know I sound cynical and pessimistic, but I would like to see one of those $80,000 checks that Mr. Lapre preached about. You never hear him say it's pure profit, and that leads me to wonder how much PROFIT he actually generates. I don't think it's that much profit, because if it was, he would have hyped on that as well. Because if you place the same small ad in every newspaper and magazine in the nation, the costs are going to be astronomical, plus you have to pay the suppliers of the product or service you are selling, as well.
Take this into consideration.... Don Lapre stated he was making $80,000 a week, placing the same small ad it every newspaper in the country. USA has roughly 7,000 from the "mainstream papers" such as the LA Times to the local paper in Waco,Texas. The average advertising rate for a paper is approx. 12.00 per week for 3 lines. If you multiply that by 7,000 the costs for advertising alone is $84,000. So the way I see it, Lapre is not making any money...he is losing $4,000 a week. Also the "mainstream papers" such as LA Times or Washington Post may even have higher advertising rates, because they have a larger reading public.
A while back, I heard that Don Lapre's company "New Stratagies" has filed for bankruptcy, so I cannot help but wonder what happened to the millions of dollars Don Lapre claimed to be swimming in. Recently I saw Don Lapre back on the air, selling his "money making kit" under a new company and I see he is now claiming you can make millions of dollars on the internet, without even to needing to touch a computer. I have not seen this new package up-close so I cannot make an educated opinion on it, but it seems to be the same old crap, in a brand new package. And "Crap is still crap, no matter how nice the package is".
Also I have to ask, if Don Lapre is really making the amount of money he claims he is, why is he running around trying to sell his so-called "secrets" for any price? Because he is such a great guy who feels sorry for us because we are not up to our necks in million-dollar bills, right? If you believe that, I have some ocean front property in Arizona to sell you. And if you'll buy that, not only will I thrown in the Golden Gate, but I will even thrown in the Seattle Space Needle for free.
If you have purchased this kit, I am sure by now you realize that all Mr. Lapre wants to do is sell you more expensive programs. He also gets you to hawk free web sites, as well. Kind of like the affiliate programs that used to flood the internet. People are paying $300 to $400 for this crap, if not more, while Don Lapre is laughing all the way to the bank. That is where Don Lapre makes a lot of his money. Don Lapre also get you to hawk his "reminder service" where his company will send out notices and reminders about birthdays, anniverseries, corporate meetings, or whatever your customer feels they need to be reminded of. Correct me if I am mistaken, but is that not what a calender and a memo pad are for?
Don Lapre is a great salesman. I am not taking anything away from him there and have to give credit where it is due. After all, he must be a great salesman because like myself, you may have invested your hard earned money hoping to reach the success and life-style he claimed to be basking in. But he does not teach you how to be successful. He does not tell you what it takes to reach the kind of success he claims to be enjoying. He sells you a program that you could have very easily learned for yourself with a trip to your local book store or public library. His "money-making kit" is not rocket science. It's not really any kind of science. The majority of the money that Mr. Lapre claims to be swimming in are because of the sales of his money-making kit, and are not produced from the techniques of the money-making kit itself.
Common sense makes me ask "If Don Lapre was making the kind of money he claims his program was racking in, why was he running around trying to sell it, for any price? I can't speak for you, but if I had a money-making secret that was making me $80,000 a week, I sure as hell would not be trying to sell my "secrets". I would be using my "money making secrets" to make even more money for myself, but maybe that's just the cynical part of me talking there.
The following was quoted by a home business "expert" at one time (not Don Lapre): "I made an extra $1,000 a month part time, working 2 hours a week from home, and then made $100,000 telling people how to make an extra $1,000 working part time, from home
Anybody can write and market their own "how-to" or "self-help" books, even if they have no idea what they are talking about. I could write my own "get rich quick" package and market it. Am I am millionaire? No. Do I actually know what it takes to make millions of dollars (without winning the lottery). Nope. But legally, that does not have to stop me from writing my own "get rich quick" package and market it. All I have to do, is when advertising my package, don't get too technical or detailed. I just need to carefully choose my wording as to not say anything that could be held as legally binding or constitute as fraud. I can make you believe I know all about making millions of dollars even though I did not technically say I knew how to make millions of dollars.
It's all on how you interpret what is being said. If you choose to take what I say, and interpret it into something different, is entirely up to you.. That is how Don Lapre has operated. He purposly chooses wordings that many people will interpret to mean Don Lapre actually did what he claimed. Is that "mis-leading advertising". Technically no, because he did not actually come right out and claim anything....but we were meant to think he did.
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