Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Barbie Exposed

By Sandra Barr 

Bild Lilli "Sex Doll"

 This article was written for Sovereign Independent Ireland, for their April issue. Link

This 11 ½” bit of moulded plastic is Lilli, the German sex bomb, in post war Germany Lilli was sold to men in smoking shops and bars, her large breasts, small waist and long legs coupled with her expression, were apparently sexually gratifying to Germen men.

On Tuesday 19th February the “Lilli” shown here was auctioned at Vectis Auctions Ltd, pre auction she was expected to fetch £1,800 - £2,200, on the day she was sold for £2900!

Lilli was the creation of cartoonist Reinhard Beüthien, she was originally a cartoon character for the tabloid Bild-Zeitung in Hamburg Germany. In 1953 Bild-Zeitung contacted Max Weissbrodt from the toy company O&M Hausser in Neustadt/Coberg with a view to creating and marketing a Lilli doll, two years later in 1955 Lilli was launched, she remained on sale until 1964. Between 1955 and 1964 up to 130,00o were produced and Lilli dolls are now much sought after by collectors.

Elastolin figures glorifying Mein Fuhrer and the rest of the Nazi war machine

O&M Hausser who produced Lilli also used the trademark “Elastolin”, prior to and during WWII they produced toy soldiers that represented every element of Hitler’s war machine, they produced little replicas of everyone from the Nazi youth to the SS, the Nazi Party and Mein Führer himself.

These mass produced toys were sold throughout Germany, and were a part of the overall social conditioning that the German people were subject to at the time. They glorified the Nazis and depicted Hitler as a strong and noble leader who would lead them to glory and restore their country to economic and political victory after their First World War defeat and humiliation.

Was it a coincidence that this company, so famed for serving the Nazis and propagating their doctrine and mind manipulation, was chosen to produce Lilli?

 The very name “Lilli” derives from the demonic entity Lilith feared and revered from antiquity.

She first appears in Sumer around 4000 BC, where she appeared in a class of storm demons or spirits as “Lliltu”. By 700 BC she was known as Lilith, Isaiah 34:14 refers to her as a “Screech Owl”.

The Alphabet of Ben-Siri is an anonymous work written in Hebrew and Aramiac between the 8th and 11th centuries, it claims that Lilith was the first wife of Adam, and she left Eden in a strop after refusing to lie beneath Adam during sexual intercourse, Adam in turn refused to lie beneath her.  According to their commentary she took refuge on the coast by the Red Sea, she took on many demons as her lovers and had countless children. 

At the behest of Adam, God summoned three Angels to bring her back to Eden, when she refused to return they threatened to murder a hundred of her children daily until she complied, she responded with a threat of her own, and she vowed to torment the children of Adam and Eve for eternity.

Her children are known as the Lilin, and still a hundred are said to die daily, as mentioned, Lilith’s retaliatory threat also still stands.

Lilith moves with the wind and she brings disease, misery and death, as we will see, the German Lilli also crossed oceans, she cannot be directly blamed for causing death, but she has certainly influenced nations.

 When Lilli was launched in 1955 German office workers earned approximately DM 50 – DM 75 a week, the 12” Lilli cost DM 12 and the 7 ½” doll DM 7.50, so she was by no means cheap. She was the first doll in history to hold a patent, and in all held 3 patents. She was marketed to adults as a joke or gag gift and was not considered appropriate for children. In “Female Chauvinist Pigs” author Ariel Levy refers to her as a “Sex Doll”. Obviously men could not have sex with Lilli, but just as porn provides stimulation to get the engine running so to speak, so to did Lilli!

Lilli’s cartoon character first appeared in the 24/6/1952 issue of Bild-Zeitung, from the onset Lilli was a new breed of woman, she had a job, she had no reservations talking about sex, and her quips were loaded with sexual innuendo, for example when a police officer told her that two-piece swimsuits were banned, Lilli quipped “Which piece do you want me to take off”. She was never a nurturing female concerned with settling down and having children, she was money hungry concerned only with fashion, clubbing and the trinkets that money could buy, she prostituted herself to balding old men for money and is famed for her quip “I could do without balding old men, but my budget couldn’t”. Her ideal was to find a rich and handsome man, but rich and ugly would do as rich was her main priority.

Lilli was also a party animal and not adverse to clubbing all night long “The sunrise is so beautiful that I always stay late at the nightclub to see it”, her interest in politics started and finished with what politicians wore, “Of course I’m interested in politics, no one should ignore the way some politicians dress”! The last Lilli cartoon appeared on 5/1/1961

They say that if you throw a frog into boiling water it knows to jump out, but if you put it in a pot of cold water and bring it to the boil, the frog will remain until death, and so it was with Lilli, at the onset she was considered a little outrageous, and not a suitable toy for children, however within a decade her image became more palatable and acceptable to the point that parents bought their children Lilli dolls, she was exported to many countries, including Italy, the USA and Scandinavian countries.

Incredibly this gold-digging, fickle clothes horse of a woman exerted an influence that was to travel far and wide, her ethos was to become global, and in the Western world, we have all been touched by Lilli!

Ruth Handler
 “Every little girl needed a doll through which to project herself into her dream of her future. If she was going to do role playing of what she would be like when she was 16 or 17, it was a little stupid to play with a doll that had a flat chest. So I gave it beautiful breasts.” Ruth Handler”

Ruth Marina Mosko was born in Denver on November 4, 1916 right in the middle of WW I. She was the youngest of ten children. Her parents were Ida and Jacob Moskowicz who were Jewish-Polish immigrants; Jacob was a blacksmith who had deserted the Russian Army.  When Ruth was 19 she went on vacation to Hollywood and wound up staying, her high school sweetheart Elliot Handler followed her and they were married in 1938.

In 1942 Elliot and his business partner Harold Matson formed a small company which manufactured picture frames, combining their two names “Matt” and “El” they called their company “Mattel”. The business was initially run from the Handlers Los Angeles garage.

Using scraps from their picture framing business they made doll house furniture, this proved more profitable than picture frames and so they moved into the toy market.

In the 1950’s TV was in its infancy, and the Handlers were quick to learn the benefits of TV advertising,  in 1955 Mattel offered to buy a years exclusive sponsorship of ABC’s “The Mickey Mouse Club”, the show was a hit and Mattel’s profits soared. Ruth Handler was cited by The Economist as saying “I was a marketing genius”, her boast was hardly an exaggeration.

In 1956 Handler was on vacation in Europe, while in Switzerland she purchased a number of the Bild Lilli dolls, she was later to claim that she did not know it was a “sex doll”, I expect the large breasts, long legs flame red nails and pout all seemed innocent enough to her!

She returned to the US and began developing what was later to be called Barbie based on the German Bild Lilli doll. Barbie was three years in the design and development department, which is a little odd considering she was a near identical replica of Lilli.
On March 9, 1959 Barbie made her debut at a New York toy fare, she was 11 ½” high, and her improbable figure if translated to a woman 5”6 would be 39 – 21 – 33! Handler is quoted as saying that the whole point of Barbie was to show little girls that they could be anything they wanted to be, she failed to add that the figure could only be achievable if they could afford a great deal of cosmetic surgery! 
In the first year of production 351,000 Barbie’s were sold at $3 each, it was three years before Mattel could keep up with demand, by 2002 over a billion Barbie’s had been sold in 150 countries. Those first Barbie’s now command up to $5000 each!
In 1961 a boyfriend was created for Barbie, and Ken was born.  Barbie and Ken were named after the Handlers two children Barbara and Ken. Ken like his girlfriend is a teenager and his main preoccupation in life is fashion. In 1964 Mattel acquired the rights to the Bild Lilli doll and production in Germany of Lilli ceased.!
The real life Barbie and Ken

Profits soared during the 1960’s, by 1970 Mattel were dogged by one problem after another, in 1970 Ruth was diagnosed with breast cancer and in 1971 Mattel recorded its first ever loss followed by more losses the following year, the losses led to shareholder law suits and a Security and Exchange Commission inquiry revealed accounting irregularities, the Handlers naturally claimed they knew nothing of the financial irregularities. I’m reminded of Father Ted reiterating “The money was only resting in my account”.
By 1975 the Handlers were forced out of the company they founded and were charged with fraud, officially they resigned, unofficially they were pushed out.

In 1978, Ruth and several other former officers of Mattel were indicted on charges of fraud conspiracy and false reporting to the Securities and Exchange Commission. She pleaded no contest to the charges, which investigators said resulted from attempts to influence stock prices, she was fined $57,000 and her 41 year sentence was suspended for probation of 5 years during which she was required to perform 500 hours community service per year. When stock holders then sued them they lost 2.5 million of their shares in Mattel.

After Handler’s mastectomy she had difficulty finding a suitable prosthetic breast, choice at that time was limited, so she teamed up with expert craftsman Peyton Massey and between them they designed a range of realistic artificial breasts, fashioned from foam and silicon. Her product was called “Nearly Me”, and she formed the Ruthon Corporation to sell it. Considering this woman’s part in giving prepubescent girls an unrealistic roll model of the figure they could wish to have as a young woman, I’m tempted to say “Karma’s a bitch”.

Handler died on April 27, 2002 aged 85, she died from complications after surgery for colon cancer. Elliot died ten years later aged 95.

In Handler’s obituary there was no mention of her Jewish faith, nor does any of her biographies mention her faith, in October 2008 film maker Tiffany Shlain released her film “The Tribe” which in an 18 minute film which looks at Barbie and the modern American Jewish woman, Shylain also ponders why this blonde blue eyed example of the perfect Aryan was created by a Jewish woman. Given Lilli’s history and the fact that she has direct links to Nazi Germany there is more than Shylain who questions Handler’s motives.
Ryan with wife Zsa Zsa gabor

The man who is credited with designing Barbie and Ken was Jack Ryan, he died in 1991 aged 65, and according to author Jerry Openheimer in his book “Toy Monster: The Big Bad World of Mattel”, he claims that Ryan was a kinky swinger with an insatiable desire for sex. He had “A manic need for sexual gratification”, he surrounded himself with Barbie clones, used the services of high class call girls and street walkers and threw wild orgies at his luxurious Bel-Air mansion according to Openheimer. Ryan’s friend Stephen Gnass told the author that listening to Ryan recanting how he created Barbie, was like listening to someone talk about a “sexual episode”. Ryan was married five times and actress Zsa Zsa Gabor was one of his wives.

Openheimer’s book also reveals that the real life Ken, son of Barbara and Elliot handler, was in fact a closet gay. Ken was married and had 3 children; by all accounts he was a wonderful husband and father, in 1990 Ken was diagnosed with AID’s and his secret “Gay life” was exposed, he died from AID’s in 1994.

Officially Ken died of a brain tumour after contracting encephalitis in Africa. In a 1989 interview with People Magazine he said of Barbie:

“Barbie should care about more than going to the beach and having a good time”. “She should care about poverty and suffering in the world”.

According to Openheimer’s expose, as the real Ken grew older, he became increasing self conscious about the wealth and fame which Barbie and Ken had brought to his family. He was also disturbed about the negative impact that Barbie had on little girls, he refused to have the dolls in his home, or let his two daughters and one son play with them.

Ken died in his family’s stately town house in Greenwich, New York age 50.

At  Barbie’s 30th birthday party in 1989, the real Barbara, now Barbara Segal had this to say “It seems a joke at this point, much of me is very proud that my folks invented the doll, I just wish I wasn’t attached to it”. Her daughter Cheryl, then 26 said at the gala that she had never had a Barbie!

In 1999 the UK doll market was worth £77 million, and Barbie’s holding share was over 75%! In 1976 the US celebrated its bicentennial year, a time capsule was buried which contained a Barbie as she was voted America’s favourite doll of the century.

Sindy: Photo credit Sindy Fashion.Com

Meanwhile over the pond in the UK, Pedigree Dolls and Toys, impressed by Barbie’s success thought they would produce a similar teenage doll and on 6/9/1963 Sindy (Sin-Die) was launched.

Pedigree thought they would go for a little less raunchy fashion doll, so her breasts were just a little smaller than Barbie’s, and her clothes were supposedly designed to be more “girl next door” than glamour Queen. Like her American counterpart she had a boyfriend Paul, and her main preoccupation in life was her clothes and acquiring more and more of them. 
Between 1968 and 1970 she was the best selling toy in the UK. By the late 70’s ownership of Sindy had moved to Hasbro who attempted to make her look more like Barbie, sales plummeted and Mattel sued them for copyright infringement, Hasbro again remodeled her face and sales again increased, however by the 1990’s Sindy sales were diminishing and her license was returned to Pedigree who re-launched her in 1999. Sindy’s target audience was pre-school girls.

When Pedigree first began developing Sindy, Mattel offered them a license to produce Barbie, they refused and instead modeled her on another American doll Tammy, owned by Ideal Toy Company. However the resemblance between Lilli, Barbie and Sindy is unmistakable, most notable is the eyes always glancing to the right,  the early models of Sindy and Barbie like Lilli never looked straight at you, she always had that sideward glance as if she feared a big bad wolf was about to sneak up on her.

When Sindy was launched in 1963 London retailers were sent a 45 rpm  record to introduce her, below is some of the marketing text that was included:

“Sindy is the free, swinging girl that every little girl longs to be. Sindy has sports clothes, glamour clothes, everyday clothes — a dog, skates, a gramophone — everything... Every genuine Sindy outfit is a child's dream come true. Each one is designed for today's fashionable young women by today's leading women designers. They are authentic miniature replicas of the latest adult clothes.”

Sindy sure was the girl with everything! Lots and lots of things…no husband mind, and never a mention of her wanting a baby, but lots and lots of plastic things, and this is just what Sindy influenced little girls to want, she had lots of wedding dresses, but never a husband, she had a little sister Patch, but never a baby, and nor did she hanker after these things, she wanted to travel, see the world, have boyfriends and buy lots of clothes, an outfit for every occasion to suit her hectic social life and activities, gym outfits, ballet outfits, beach wear, an outfit for every occasion!

During the 1960’s up to 70% of the profits from Sindy were due to the large range of Sindy accessories, it’s not the hardest thing in the world for the unscrupulous to exploit a 5/6 year old, and convince them of what they must have in order to be happy, and the Sindy advertising bandwagon convinced them that they must have every new accessory! Prior to the 1960’s very few people had televisions, and little girls were happy enough with a rag doll to play house with, after the television, sophisticated marketing was brought into the center of the home, and for the first time parents were put under pressure to supply the trinkets on offer.

In Sindy’s first 40 years nearly 100 million were sold, on 6/9/13 she celebrates her 50th birthday, and a whole new range of merchandise is expected for this momentous occasion. She now has her own web site which encourages 6 year olds to get to grips with computers, and no doubt encourages them to hanker after more and more things. They can also read her secret diary, and no doubt be encouraged to keep their own.

Social Change and effect of Lilli, Barbie and Sindy

Previous to reading this article I expect you have hardly given a thought to these so called Fashion Dolls and the wide ranging impact they have had on society as a whole.  Previous to their invention, Europe and the West had been controlled and dominated by the various Christian factions, their social and moral dogma ruled Europe for hundreds of years, women were subjugated, sex was sinful and dissenters were murdered. In a classic Hegelian Dialectic (Problem reaction, solution) manipulated situation, the chaos of WW II left the masses ripe for major social and moral change. And within a few short decades society moved from one extreme to another. Under the iron fist of the church sex was dirty and sordid it was sinful and all children were born in sin because they were the product of that cardinal sin.

Women had no rights, they were treated as second class citizens, women were rightly demanding equal rights. The women’s liberation movement is the USA was founded and funded by the Rockefeller foundation, and the move towards equality was steered by organizations like the Rockefeller’s, what began as a demand for equality quickly turned to “burn your bra” and “free love”, in post war Europe and America who would have guessed that sexual morals would so quickly be turned from one extreme to another. Sex should be a sacred act between a man and a woman, the people who manipulate society at all times aim for the imbalance of society as a whole, people divided and unbalanced do not pose much of a threat to the ruling elite.

The church had created the extreme where sex was sinful and sordid, the 60’s revolution created an equally unbalanced approach to the sexual union. Porn became commonly available, sex was cheap and easy to find, by the 80’s/90’s it was sold as nothing more than a bit of fun, the media was used to full effect to influence us all and dictate what the new social norms should be.

The “programming” for the new breed of citizen started young, and Barbie’s place in that programming cannot be underestimated. In mind control programmes the person under mind control is controlled by “a handler”, one has to wonder just how aware Ruth Handler was of the impact her creation would have in molding the minds of impressionable little girls.

To give you a rough idea of Barbie’s Empire, it is estimated that the average girl in the US aged from 3-11 owns 11 Barbie’s, in the UK and Italy 7, and in France and Germany 5. Annual sales total $1.6 BILLION! Every year 150 new Barbie’s are created, there are Barbie fan clubs, conventions, magazines, web sites and exhibitions, she has a huge cult following, as Mattel say “She is more than just a doll”. She is the most successful toy in the history of toys. If the excess of one billion dolls that have been produced so far were to lay toe to head, they would circle the globe more than 7 times!

I was born in 1961, my first dolls were all baby dolls, you looked after them, took them for walks in their pram, kept them clean and nurtured them, the nurturing instinct in most females is innate,  and traditionally girls wanted to grow up get married have babies and a family of their own, by the late 60’s I had a Sindy, and I remember bothering my mother because I felt I should have all the accessories that were on offer. We were fast moving into a con-sumer-ist society and at every turn we were bombarded with all the things we needed. On either side of the pond Barbie and Sindy played their parts, they had clothes, lots and lots of them; top designers made them, and the TV instructed what we should get next for our doll.

These dolls did not have husbands, they had boyfriends, Sindy had a big double bed and wore sexy negligees, having babies was never on their “to do” list, everything they done was self serving, new clothes, new household appliances, holidays, exotic jobs, and little girls wanted to grow up and be just like Sindy and Barbie. Had we of been given a doll that wanted less things, and was happy to be a mother, then that is what we would have been influenced to be.

Over the course of my 50 plus years I have observed the disintegration of the family unit, the mother was from antiquity the pivotal point in a family,  over the last four decades the mass media has derided the mother, we have Disney films that rarely feature a Mother, Sindy and Barbie had all manner of friends and siblings, but no Mother, and we are constantly fed a stream of “bad mother” stories from the media. I come from a generation that was taught that above all else in life, you value your Mother and family, an individual has strength and support from within a strong family unit, the disintegration of the family unit has not been by accident, it has been by design, and from the invention of Barbie, little girls have been trained to be money hungry, materialist clothes horses, obsessed with how they look. 

Barbie’s whole marketing focused on giving little girls a doll that they could emanate and hope to be like, they might as well of given them a manual, and said this is what you should be like when you grow up:

1. Fashion conscious, always strive to have the latest fashion, this may sink you in debt, which will in turn effect your health and well being, but maintaining the very latest in style should be your number one priority.

2. You must have industrial strength bleaches applied to your teeth so that your smile is as white as Barbie’s, this will of course destroy the tooth enamel, but then you can get new veneers and crowns, they will be very expensive, but if you work, work, work you will be able to afford them.

3.. Your natural hair colour will not be acceptable, at all costs keep your hair as chemically toxic as is possible, use as many products on it as can, all these products will destroy your hair, but again if you work, work, work, you will be able to afford extensions to achieve the Barbie look.

4. White is not a good look, your natural skin tone will be “unfashionable”, you must maintain an all year tan like Barbie. This will take up a great deal of your time, and the toxic ingredients in the fake tan will ride on the back of the nano particles in the tanning solution, straight into your blood stream. These chemicals are known to cause cancer and infertility, but that’s a risk you will have to take, being white will not be an option if you are to maintain the look.

5. Body hair will also be unfashionable; again you must use all products available to illuminate your body hair. Pubic hair has a function; it acts like a wick and draws toxins from the endocrine system in the groin, keeping this area hair free will take up a great deal of your time, and you will suffer from ingrown hairs and other related complaints, but don’t worry about that, we will supply you with more toxic products to help you maintain a hair free body.

6. It is highly improbable that you will have large perfectly formed breasts when you grow up, so from about 14 onwards try and think up ways to generate enough money for fake breasts, borrow money if you have to, you may be paying them off until you are near 30, by which time you will need new ones, but believe me they will be worth the time, money and risks to your health.

7. By the time you grow up all make up will have titanium and other nano particles which can penetrate the skins natural defense barrier, every chemical on the ingredients list of your make will be able to ride on the back of these nano particles straight into your blood stream, the more you overload your system, the more chances that you will suffer the ill effects of these deadly chemicals, cancer and infertility to name but two. But hey who cares, Barbie does not want babies and she never grows old, so be sure that you never go out without your make up. Cleansers with nano particles and more toxic waste will be available for removal of the make up.

8. As it is highly unlikely that you will have Barbie’s perfect features, surgery will be available, you can have your lips made bigger, your cheek bones altered, and all manner of other procedures to make you look perfect.

9. Getting old! Unfortunately we have not yet devised a way to stop people getting old, but we will have available to you all manner of products to disguise the effect aging will have on you. Botox is a neurotoxin made from botulinum, it has a paralyzing effect, and will instantly erase your wrinkles. It may travel and cause respiratory problems and paralyses elsewhere in the body, you may end up with a droopy eyelid, blood poisoning or neurological conditions, you may even die, but wrinkles are not an option so you will take the risk.

10. Keeping up with the above fashion needs and beauty demands, you may sometimes feel drained, or empty, anti-depressants will help you deal with these feelings, and regular shopping trips will give you a quick fix. No one said that looking like an 11.6” bit of vinyl was going to be easy.

I wonder if the Barbie’s and Sindy’s of the 60’s and 70’s had come with the above manual would parents have bought them for their children?

A German brochure from the 1950’s stated that Lilli’s wardrobe made her “The star of every bar”, in the first Barbie commercial they said :
“her dancing outfit rings a bell, as hard
 as she will cast a spell”. 
A witch casts spells, and to be sure that the spell is unbroken, at least once a year a Witch Barbie is on sale!
Right: Black magic Barbie, no kidding, they actually have a Black magic one!


Cathy Cline, vice president of marketing in the US for Mattel told the New York Times:

“One of the greatest things about Barbie is that she continues to push the envelope”, “Barbie does not care what other people think”.

Barbie will continue to influence little girls and weave her spell, until people realise that she is not just a harmless bit of plastic!

The mass mind bending of little girls caused by Barbie has been addressed in this article, the knock on effect on the male of the species has had an equally devastating effect, but that is another article I feel.
A small selection of the many Barbie "Witch" dolls! To ensure that the spell is unbroken, they issue at least one a year!

Sandra Barr

Ruth and Elliot Handler biographies:  Link
Toy Monster, available to read online:  Link
 Ruth Handler biography:  Link
 Tiffany Shlain: Link

Botox dangers: Link 

Sindy turns 50: Link

Ken Handler biography: Link

Barbara Handler Segal quote: Link

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