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Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:19 AM

Rafalca - she’s America’s Horse! Cheer her on!



The day we’ve all been waiting for since the Olympics began is finally here: The Romneys’ famous rumba-horse, Rafalca, is going for the gold! Right now! From what I’ve read, she’s not favored to medal, but I’m sincerely rooting for her.

A surprise Rafalca victory would obviously bolster Romney’s gritty, man-of-the-people image. But beyond that, in a very real sense, Rafalca belongs to all of us.

Her obscenely wealthy part-owners requested a $77K tax break for her care, expecting the rest of us to make up the shortfall in the US Treasury. So she’s America’s Horse! Cheer her on!


http://www.balloon-juice.com/2012/08/02/rafalca-for-the-gold/

24 replies, 2355 views

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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Rafalca - she’s America’s Horse! Cheer her on! (Original post)
kpete Aug 2012 OP
Swamp Lover Aug 2012 #1
ananda Aug 2012 #2
Gabi Hayes Aug 2012 #3
avebury Aug 2012 #4
riderinthestorm Aug 2012 #8
The Velveteen Ocelot Aug 2012 #5
riderinthestorm Aug 2012 #9
The Velveteen Ocelot Aug 2012 #13
antigone382 Aug 2012 #17
The Velveteen Ocelot Aug 2012 #19
antigone382 Aug 2012 #20
The Velveteen Ocelot Aug 2012 #21
antigone382 Aug 2012 #22
riderinthestorm Aug 2012 #24
Yavin4 Aug 2012 #6
Larkspur Aug 2012 #7
riderinthestorm Aug 2012 #10
Jeff In Milwaukee Aug 2012 #11
Ineeda Aug 2012 #12
Larkspur Aug 2012 #14
EnviroBat Aug 2012 #15
riderinthestorm Aug 2012 #23
Cali_Democrat Aug 2012 #16
KamaAina Aug 2012 #18

Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:21 AM

1. Agreed.

 

Just posted that if I were Michele Obama, I would have attended the event.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:22 AM

2. LOL

Go Rafalca! Make us all proud to have suffered
to make you great!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:25 AM

3. ''Nay!''>>>>

LONDON - Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Monday distanced himself from comments made by Rafalca, a rare 15-year-old Oldenberg mare of exceptional breeding owned by his wife, Ann, who suggested President Obama was not born in the United States. Rafalca is in London, competing in the Olympic event of dressage. A reporter for The Guardian newspaper asked Rafalca if she thought Obama was a natural-born citizen......

see link:

http://www.supertuesdaynews.com/1/post/2012/07/romneys-dressage-horse-rafalca-says-obama-wasnt-born-in-the-us.html

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:25 AM

4. Considering the fact that the 99% have been covering

Romney's tax deduction the horse should belong to the American people.

Imagine a political add encouraging Americans to root for Rafalca which ends with Rafalca, America's horse, paid for by your tax dollars.

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Response to avebury (Reply #4)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:03 AM

8. Your tax deduction info is wrong - they tried to claim $77k deduction. The IRS allowed $49. nt

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:30 AM

5. I sort of hope Rafalca does win.

More media attention on Ann's insanely expensive hobby, of which $77K was a subsidy from you and me. The right-wing talking heads have been trying to claim Rafalca is just a "therapy animal," like a friendly dog who visits people in nursing homes. An Olympic medal for a $500,000 "therapy animal" with a $77K tax deduction would be fun media fodder.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #5)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:05 AM

9. She won't win. The $77k tax deduction wasn't allowed - the IRS allowed $49 only

Nobody, especially the Rmoney's have said Rafalca is a therapy horse (Ann has other horses for that).

Lastly, ANY athlete at the Olympics has an enormous amount of money in their sport - all of them are incredibly expensive at that level. ALL of them.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #9)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:41 AM

13. Some right-wing radio ranters have described Rafalca as a therapy animal.

Right here on AM radio. I know the Romneys have not made that claim, although they did say Ann got into dressage as therapy for her MS.

Yes, sports at the Olympic level are all quite expensive. But dressage is expensive at all levels. It's not for very many of the 99%.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #13)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 01:31 PM

17. No, you learn the basics of dressage in almost any discipline of horseback riding.

It's a way of communicating with the horse, and improving your balance and that of the horse. You don't even have to own a horse to learn the basics. Just because the name is a fancy french word doesn't mean it's only for the upper crust (omelet is a french word, too). And you don't train in a top hat.

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Response to antigone382 (Reply #17)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:20 PM

19. Most people can't afford even basic riding lessons.

(Tried it once myself; it was too expensive and it made my butt hurt). Friend of mine used to have a couple of horses - just regular horses, nothing fancy like Rafalca. He told me what it cost to feed, care for and stable them - I was shocked; it was waaaaayy more than most of us 99%ers could manage. I appreciate that horseback riding, including dressage, is a perfectly legitimate pastime. But, just as America's Cup yachting is not just sailing, dressage is not just horseback riding.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #19)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:23 PM

20. How much it costs largely depends on where you are...

...if you live where land is cheap and you have good pasture, it might not cost that much to feed them. I'm not claiming that everyone in America can own a horse, but for a lot of people it isn't a totally unobtainable goal to either own one or take riding lessons. Again, it depends on where you are. But dressage *is* a key element of virtually all horseback riding, and while competing would be more expensive, merely practicing the principles of dressage won't cost you any more than any other form of horseback riding.

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Response to antigone382 (Reply #20)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 02:35 PM

21. Even if I had the money I don't think I could get past the sore butt part.

And: learning to come about and jibe are key elements of all sailing, too, but the fact that I know how to sail (and learned to do so very cheaply) doesn't mean I can afford a boat that could compete in the America's Cup, which would be the equivalent of Olympic-level dressage.

Don't get me wrong. I like horses, although they make me itch and riding them makes my butt hurt. I don't have any problem with Ann Romney doing dressage; rich people have always been able to have hobbies the rest of us can't afford. What does chap my hide (even more than riding a horse naked might do) is the right-wingers acting like this is just her "therapy" when it turns out the horse isn't even an actual pet or companion animal, but just a business undertaking - and at the same time they busted on John Kerry for the "elite" sport of windsurfing. A top of the line windsurfer costs about $1800. Rafalca cost $500,000. It's the hypocrisy more than anything that bugs me.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #21)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:01 PM

22. lol, yes the physical discomforts are a barrier to a lot of would-be horse lovers :)

sore butts (not to mention hamstrings), the smell (which I personally like, but many do not), and the work of cleaning up your tack, your horse, and your horse's poop.

I get what you mean entirely. I have no problem with the Romneys doing dressage, and I can identify with the joy that Ann Romney gets out of watching her horse perform. But as much as it might be incidentally beneficial to living with MS, it is not necessarily directly tied to therapy for that MS. "Owning a top-tier dressage horse" is a form of therapy that is not likely to be covered by anyone's insurance, even under Obamacare.

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Response to The Velveteen Ocelot (Reply #19)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:42 PM

24. Dressage is most done by the 99%ers. Olympians in any sport require big $$ and sponsors

not just in dressage but every sport.

Dressage simply means 'training" in french and is the training method used to get a horse more responsive to the aids, cues, and signals. That kind of training also is used to make the horse more responsive and supple. Its used by everyone who rides - therapy horses, western horses, backyard trail ponies....

Once you start competing, then it becomes much more formalized (and expensive). But dressage in general is done by anyone who gets on a horse.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:43 AM

6. Why Does The Human Get The Medal

The horse is doing all of the work.

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Response to Yavin4 (Reply #6)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 09:58 AM

7. If you ever rode a horse, you'd know that is not completely true

You don't see any Joe or Jane Couchpotatoe riding in the Olympics, do you? Those riders are very fit themselves and have to be because the signals that they send their horse has to be very subtle so that it looks like the horse is doing all the work.

Anyway, horses prefer food, not inorganic medals, and these horses are very well fed.

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Response to Larkspur (Reply #7)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:06 AM

10. +1. Couldn't have said it better... nt

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Response to Yavin4 (Reply #6)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:20 AM

11. Human also collect stud fees and the horse does all the work

Although if I were a horse, I could live with that.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:21 AM

12. Sadly, the rMoneys have made a mockery of legitimate equine therapy.

There's a facility near me that primarily benefits special needs kids. They rely heavily on volunteers and donations, but similar facilities charge very reasonable rates, some of which may be covered by insurance, (I assume.) I'm linking a very informative page from their website here: http://www.instridetherapy.org/pages/equineassisted.cfm

I doubt that Rafalca participates in such pedestrian activities for the hoi polloi, though. Rafalca is just for Anne, although she probably has other ordinary non-Olympian horses for 'therapy' and takes the tax deduction on the most expensive horse she owns.

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Response to Ineeda (Reply #12)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 10:58 AM

14. I doubt Anne rides Ralfalca or ever did

at least before the Olympics. These Olympic horses are not your typical backyard horse. They are the Ferraris of the equine world and usually only the designated rider/trainer rides the horse through the Olympic events. Riding is a team sport between horse and rider, so having the horse be ridden by multiple riders before the Olympics could cause confusion with the horse and more mistakes in the events.

After the Olympics, the horse may get another rider, like a promising up-and-coming but inexperienced show rider, or be sold to another owner. At this level, horses are a business. Olympic and World Cup riding is as much the "sport of kings" as horse racing is.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 11:01 AM

15. Has anyone ever transported a horse overseas?

I'm quite sure we a footing the bill for that little tax write-off too. Can't be cheap.

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Response to EnviroBat (Reply #15)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:38 PM

23. The horses are transported with funds from a private foundation, unlike all other Olympic athletes

The horses pay their own way via a fund from the USEF.

It didn't cost the taxpayer (or the Rmoneys) a single cent.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 01:27 PM

16. USA! USA! USA!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 01:40 PM

18. It turns out the Romneys only own half of her

I forget who owns the front.

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