Usana: The New Milli Vanilli?

No, I can’t take credit for this bit of brilliance. It was Zac Bissonnette over at Blogging Stocks. All Zac.

Poor Usana Health Sciences. They just can’t catch a break can they? What with Barry Minkow and Company ruining things for them. You know… a few experts like me, Robert FitzPatrick, Dr. Manfred Kroger, Dr. Jon Taylor, Doug Brooks, Esq. Experts with real degrees, credentials, and credibility.

And in the other corner, we have Usana.

  • Usana director Denis Waitley – No Masters degree (Usana admits it, but claims it was a typo that went on year after year after year, and Waitley tried to get them to correct it but they forgot)
  • Usana director Denis Waitley – No verifiable PhD (Usana just thinks all the paperwork from the diploma mill Waitley claims to have attended was lost)
  • Usana VP of R&D Dr. Timothy Wood – Usana says his degree is in biology but Yale says it’s in forestry (Usana says “oh that’s the same thing”)
  • Usana medical advisory board member Ladd McNamara – Not a doctor at all and even surrendered his medical license in Ohio and agreed to a lifetime ban on practicing medicine there. A little something related to fraud, the documents say. Has been prescribing drugs in California without a medical license. (Usana says “oops” and kicks him off the board.)

Yet Usana’s spokesman Joseph Poulos says it’s not their fault:

…Joseph Poulos described Usana as the victim of short-sellers who have bet against its stock price, including Mr. Minkow.

Zac sums it up beautifully:

Right. So Usana Health Sciences had at least three cases of material misrepresentations of the credentials of high level employees, but somehow it’s a “victim” of short-sellers. Can’t Usana just take responsibility for its lies and move on? Apparently not. It appears to be borrowing a line from Milli Vanilli’s song “Blame it on the Rain,” which gives advice in the event that you are caught cheating on your girlfriend:

Gotta blame it on something
Blame it on the rain that was falling, falling
Blame it on the stars that did shine at night
Whatever you do don’t put the blame on you
Blame it on the rain yeah yeah

So Usana is taking Milli Vanilli’s advice about diversion. Is it any coincidence that Milli Vanilli was later exposed as one of the greatest frauds in music history?

I bet Usana wishes those pesky fraud investigators would go away already!


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