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Woo hoo! Hey Ann Romney, where're you going. I'm goin' to London
to win a dressage medal from those European sons of bitches.

From the Los Angeles Times

Ann Romney’s dressage horse, Rafalca, and her trainer, Jan Ebeling, earned a place on the U.S. Olympic Equestrian team on Saturday, cementing the Romneyfamily’s already deep ties to the Olympic games. The official announcement is expected to come Sunday by the U.S. Equestrian Federation.
Rafalca and Ebeling will compete for the U.S. in the London Summer Games.

Kenneth Braddick of Dressage News said Ebeling had “the best performance of his life” Saturday at the second of two Olympic trials at the U.S. Equestrian Federation national dressage championships in Gladstone, N.J. In a post on the website, Dressage News, Braddick wrote that Ebling has also taken in stride the ribbing he’s gotten from comedians such as Stephen Colbert.

“The Romney’s horse might go to the Olympics!” Colbert announced last week. “Though one would imagine it’s going to be a long drive to London on top of their station wagon.”

(more below)

  An attempt is made for a positive spin:

The Romneys’ involvement in dressage has raised the profile of the sport, linking it to the American presidential campaign in a way that has brought both adulation and mild ridicule as some have poked fun at dressage as a sport of the elite.
Exactly who thinks dressage is NOT an elitist activity. After all, how many people who like Sport think it's like a common game like say---basketball?

Now let's see, what would more people like to do, windsurfing or dressage?
Who is more "French", Romney or Kerry?
Who served the country more honorably in his 20s, Kerry or Romney?

Any chance the dressage contest happens during the Republican Convention? Now that would be interesting. I assume Willard would jet over there for the contest, unless he has other priorities.

Poll

What sport is most elitist?

0%0 votes
2%2 votes
74%69 votes
3%3 votes
4%4 votes
3%3 votes
8%8 votes
4%4 votes

| 93 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  The most elitist sport is baseball. Just ask (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG, on the cusp, Gooserock

    George Will.

    Only in baseball do you have--in the words of Anna Russell--Great Experts speaking for the edification of other Great Experts.  All very pompous and know-it-all-ish.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:23:25 PM PDT

  •  Horse Ballet, not Dressage (8+ / 0-)

    Lets call it for what it is.  Can you imagine what Rove would do with an image of Romney watching his horse do ballet?

  •  What's the Sport of Kings? (6+ / 0-)

    That has to be the most elitist.

    But dancing horses has to be a close second.

    "The disturbing footage depicts piglets being drop kicked and swung by their hind legs. Sows are seen being kicked and shoved as they resist leaving their piglets."

    by Bush Bites on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:28:00 PM PDT

  •  Excellent selections (baseball :) and horse racing (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cosette

    but sadly I believe polls cannot be edited. Anyway, wouldn't trotter racing be REALLY elitist? My apologies to Professor Harold Hill and the people of River City, Ioway/

    the next thing ya know, Your son is playin' for moneyIn a pinch-back suit. And list'nin to some big out-a-town JasperHearin' him tell about horse-race gamblin'. Not a wholesome trottin' race, no!But a race where they set down right on the horse! Like to see some stuck-up jockey'boy Sittin' on Dan Patch? Make your blood boil? Well, I should say.

    Read more: MUSIC MAN - YA GOT TROUBLE LYRICS http://www.metrolyrics.com/...
     Copied from MetroLyrics.com

  •  As a rider, there is nothing "elitist" about (10+ / 0-)

    dressage in the least.   Dressage is simply training your horse in a historically classical manner.  

    There are thousands and thousands of "average joes" - who hardly have the money of the Romneys - who ride the lower levels of dressage on quite inexpensive horses.

    2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

    by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:33:30 PM PDT

    •  I ride good horses. (5+ / 0-)

      But they are "back yard" guys.  One is Prix St. Georges, the other is 3rd/4th level.
      I ride for the pure fun of it, and my horses move well, are very athletic, but they are not competition horses, and competing takes the whimsy and the intellectual, artistic pursuit away from me.
        My pal is the Region 9 Director.
      The structure of competition is very elite.
      Dressage as a riding disclipine is not.

    •  Sorry. Not meant to offend. But imagine what (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cosette, gramofsam1

      GOP commercials would do with an Obama dressage horse comoeting in the Olympics. And that prancing around may be classical but I don't think it looks like most people imagine horses moving (especially the bit shown on the Colbert report). The merion Country Club has horse competitions but they seem to feature obstacle jumping, which seems more in a horses' nature. of course my first hand experience with horses is a few minutes at a time as a child riding ponies being led around.

      And I have to go along with Sam Malone's (Cheers) preference for cars over horses, anyway.

      •  The guy has money. So what? Having enough (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PinHole, VClib

        money to enable your wife, who has multiple sclerosis, to ride as it helps her physically, and having enough money to support a rider and Olympic level horse isn't a sin.  It's a blessing.

        2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

        by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:43:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's physical therapy? (7+ / 0-)

          The Romneys have a much better insurance plan than I do.

          "The disturbing footage depicts piglets being drop kicked and swung by their hind legs. Sows are seen being kicked and shoved as they resist leaving their piglets."

          by Bush Bites on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:48:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Riding horses is an acceptable physcial therapy (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina, PinHole, Pluto, skohayes

            activity for many health problems, yes, indeed.  

            And Ann Romney's riding for physical therapy has nothing to do with them also sponsoring the expense of an Olympic-level horse and rider.

            Good for them!  I wish the horse and rider all the luck in the world.  

            Because a rider doesn't get to go to the Olympics unless you find someone like the Romney's willing to sponsor you, or buy the good horse.

            Supporting the American Olympic team is a good thing.

            2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

            by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:51:54 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Take a google (0+ / 0-)

            at therapeutic riding programs.  I have no idea about Ann Romney, but horseback riding is well-established as a form of physical therapy, particularly for kids.  

        •  Except that the taxpayer is subsidizing them (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pinto Pony, TofG

          because they write some of their costs off as a loss.

          That is a blessing to them, perhaps; but not to the average joe that pays more in taxes, percentage wise, than do the Romneys.

      •  Mitt should have bought a NASCAR team... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TofG, Orlaine, Pluto

        ...or something to do with rodeos, to sort of even things out with the base.

        "The disturbing footage depicts piglets being drop kicked and swung by their hind legs. Sows are seen being kicked and shoved as they resist leaving their piglets."

        by Bush Bites on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:44:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It's really a shame what the Romneys (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PinHole, Pluto, TofG

      are doing to the image of this sport, or let's say discipline. Just like they ruin everything.

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:58:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That is true, just like there are thousands of (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cosette, PinHole

      average Joe windsurfers.

      Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about. Mark Twain

      by Deathtongue on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 11:21:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  My niece competed in dressage (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PinHole, Margd, TofG, misslegalbeagle, VClib

      when she was a teenager.

      She and her mom had very little money, but it was something they could do as a unit.  It meant a lot to them at the time (dad was not in the picture).

      The horse that she rode now lives at my place but is still in her care.

      I agree; dressage per se is not elitist.

      Some elitists participate in dressage.

  •  I have been a dressage enthusiast (13+ / 0-)

    for around 25 years, and routinely train with a former Olympian.  
    But I stopped competing years ago due to the cost, and the fact you had to be atop some big moving European warmblood to score well.  
    These Olympic mounts are occasionally 7-figure horses, and saddles are not $1,000...they are $8,000  at the regional level.
    Jan is a fabulous rider, brilliant competitor, and he works hard, and is due to get in this limelight. He is a great trainer and clinician, and is known to be very humane with his horses.
    The sport is very, very elite if you are in competition.  The politics of it are notorious.  Sometimes, you know who will win by looking at the entry list.
    For those of us who just love it and enjoy the endless learning experience, this criticism is pretty hurtful, but inarguable.
    One of my very best friends is a Region Director in the Uunited States Dressage Federation, and she routinely talks about the jangle of jewels at the wine and cheese gatherings.

    •  Dressage is no more "elitist" at the top levels (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VClib

      than the cost of any other sport.

      The other 99.5% do just fine, and are not "elitist" in the least.

      2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

      by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:36:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The US drags butt in Dressage. (5+ / 0-)

    I don't think Rafalca is all that. google totilas or blue hors matine, winyamaro, or fuego xii.........

    Winyamaro is amazing with really fluid hindquarters.

    I think a lot of the better ones are ungelded and hot. They are also conformed nicely and nice movers to begin with. It shows in that they are into it and not merely being ridden.

    •  I love Fuego XII! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mumtaznepal
    •  This is Blue Hors Matine's best ... (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      on the cusp, Pluto, PinHole, skohayes, VClib

      World Equestrian Games 2006 Finals.    You have no idea how difficult it is to condition a horse to be able to do this, and to take the years necessary to train them to do this.

      2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

      by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:39:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I understood very little of your comment, so I'll (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slouchsock, gramofsam1

      just have to take your word for it.

      My guess is that the political implications of the Romney's excellent adventure will be quite different for people who know about horses versus those of us who don't. As an outsider, it looks like something that rich people would do for fun with other rich people, but I could be wrong about that.

      •  And that's unfortunate IMO. That the Romney's (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pluto

        support and financial sponsorship of an Olympic-level rider, of the American Olympic Team, is the subject of political machination.

        I would move from this country if Romney were elected President.  

        But I don't confuse Romney the politician with Romney the wealthy guy generous enough to spend money to sponsor a dressage rider.

        I can't think of a sport that, at the top level, doesn't require a significant financial investment and financial sponsors of the person with talent.  

        That includes being a cowboy riding the rodeo.  Bicyclist.  Triathlete.  Tennis.  Golf.

        2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

        by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:09:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Dressage is a technique not a sport (7+ / 0-)

    It goes back to the 15th Century.

    Dressage is difficult but it does not really challenge the rider physically.  Horse jumping does.

    I consider myself a bit of a horse guy. I got my 1st horse, a retired thoroughbred mare, when I was 5 and I played some polo.  Polo is a bit elitist, should be on the list.

    I also played rugby in 4 countries and did quite a bit of windsurfing.  So I am a bit elitist I guess, regardless of my current situation

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:35:10 PM PDT

    •  They have made a sport out of (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TofG, Shockwave, Bush Bites

      a technique, to it's detriment.
      just google "blue tongue".
      What I saw in the warm up ring at the World Equestrian Games in Ky should have caused the riders to be eliminated.  At that level, it takes visible blood.  One horse was eliminated due to a bloody mouth.

      •  It's an exaggeration to imply that upper level (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PinHole

        horses are generally all mistreated.   That is simply untrue.

        2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

        by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:55:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I did not imply that. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TofG, Shockwave

          Let me tell you this is not an implication.  This is eye witness.
          I saw things at WEG that the technical delegates turned a blind eye to.
          If someone had ridden my horses in rollkur, I would have personally dragged them off the horse.
          As the competotrs/combinations of horse and rider go up in competition, corners are cut, deals are made.
          Look at Michelle Gibson.  Her backers sold her horse out from under her at the Olympics.
          Nobody with the big bucks has supported her since.
          Steffan Peters is backed by money.
          lots of riders every bit as good as Jan and Steffan are stuck off in Alaska, or Hawaii, and do local fundraisers to pay for flights.
          The competition is only for the very, very rich.
          No poor person rides Olympic dressage since Hilda Gurney.
          Are you an apologist for dressage or for Romney's horse, or the competitive sport?
          I really do not get you.
          Olympic horse grooms make more money than I do.

             

      •  You mean this "technique"? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        on the cusp

        Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

        by Shockwave on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:02:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The sad thing about modern riding is, even at some (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shockwave, PinHole

          upper levels, is that in a truly well-trained horse, the head should never come behind the bit, behind the vertical.

          2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

          by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:38:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Dressage is pretty non-aerobic really, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shockwave, Pluto, TofG

      especially for the rider. Lead changes and stride lengths  schooling for jumping and cross country is what dressage is to get the rider and horse acclimated.

      Polo is a real sport. And you need 5 or 6 horses a man. And it is really dangerous and you get hurt a lot even in clean play. Two horses leaning on each other at a gallop with your leg in between is normal play. Not to mention how hard it is to ride with a mallet, forget hitting the ball. AND polo is played at 90-100 degrees usually........

      •  I almost made a fool of myself... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WheninRome, PinHole, TofG

        ...when I once played against Adolfo Cambiaso.

        Now I just do some "sticking" occasionally in Santa Barbara.

        It is dangerous for both rider and horse.

        Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

        by Shockwave on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:14:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Dressage is extremely physically demanding on the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Shockwave

        horse.  It takes years to develop the musculature for a horse to be able to carry himself properly.  And the rider needs to be plenty fit, too.  

        Polo is an entirely different sport, where the horse isn't the focus, but the vehicle.   Hard to compare the two sports, they are very different.

         

        2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

        by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:14:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I compare dressage to horse jumping (0+ / 0-)

          I imagine that it takes stamina to sit up straight for so long and guide the horse.  I know it's difficult, I am not cutting it down but I don't see the action, just the beauty.

          Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

          by Shockwave on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:20:56 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I've done both, two different things :-) (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Shockwave, PinHole

            You're doing alot more than just sitting up straight and steering :-)

            Glad you can enjoy the beauty of a good classically-trained dressage horse.  It truly is beautiful when done correctly, without shortcuts.

            2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

            by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:24:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I've done both, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shockwave

          there is no comparison. Horses have all the muscles they need to move any way they want. They are naturally athletic. The trick is to get them to collect in dressage.

          No warmblood is going to be able to run flat out for 6 minutes in the summer humidity, stop, turn, spin.......

          No comparison. Many polo players are also dressage riders and usually well versed in high level jumping too. Most polo ponies benefit from cross discipline to keep them from getting stale anyway.

  •  $77,000 Tax deduction (7+ / 0-)

    Apparently the Romney's got a manly $77,000 tax deduction for the care and feeding of their dressage horse.
    I'm going to take a $77,000 deduction for my dog.

    •  Only if you are willing to sell your dog for a (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      on the cusp

      profit.  

      You can only deduct horse expenses if it is a business, not a hobby.   And the IRS goes over horse/farm expenses with a fine toothed comb, as so many hobby riders try to pull this.

      2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

      by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:41:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  And by the way, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slouchsock, cosette, TofG

      where are Mitt's promised 2011 tax turns?

      The definition of INSANITY: Voting Republican over and over and over and expecting the economy to get better.

      by pollbuster on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:15:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I fear for the horse. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG

    Now that this is getting negative attention, will the Romneys need to come up with a reason not to send the horse to London?

  •  Colbert did a great spot on this this week (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    on the cusp, TofG, ctsteve, cosette

    "For what profit a man, if he gain the world, but has to pay taxes on it?" -ontheleftcoast, The Book of Paul

    by MsGrin on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:39:54 PM PDT

    •  Colbert participates and sponsors a world-class (0+ / 0-)

      sailboat for racing in real life.   He also sponsored one of the Olympic skating teams when they were desperate for $$$  - or was it curling?

      2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

      by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:49:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This Is a Joke I Presume (4+ / 0-)

    Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

    Madam, there IS no second.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 08:54:52 PM PDT

  •  Face it. (4+ / 0-)

    Yes, if a Dem did it, it would be ridiculed from here to kingdom come.

    But, he's a Repub, so he probably doesn't have to worry.

    We should probably stick with the car elevator.

    "The disturbing footage depicts piglets being drop kicked and swung by their hind legs. Sows are seen being kicked and shoved as they resist leaving their piglets."

    by Bush Bites on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:03:27 PM PDT

  •  I will wait for NASCAR Nation to weigh in on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG

    this particular connection that the Mittster has to us Little People...

    ...I'm not positive, but my initial impression is that "rubbin' is racin'" is a dressage concept...

    "In a nation ruled by swine, all pigs are upward mobile..." - Dr. Hunter S. Thompson

    by Jack K on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:37:45 PM PDT

  •  Me (6+ / 0-)
    Exactly who thinks dressage is NOT an elitist activity.
    I know lots of people who participate in this sport, and none are in the 1%. A few are even teachers.

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:54:51 PM PDT

    •  I looked up some income stats (0+ / 0-)

      $49, 445
      census bureau median income here

      $49,228
      average teacher salary in Colorado here here

      Almost half of teachers make above median income, so to say "even a teacher" can participate in dressage does not mean that its a commonplace or inexpensive sport.

      •  right, because there's no yawning divide (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pluto, skohayes, TofG

        between commonplace and elitist, is there?

        "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

        by eXtina on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:49:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  You really are wrong on this (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        slouchsock, PinHole, skohayes, eXtina

        I know several people who do dressage. Their horses aren't world class and they don't make $49,000. It's a surprisingly middle class sport.

        Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about. Mark Twain

        by Deathtongue on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 11:26:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I asked earlier (0+ / 0-)

          what does it cost to participate?

          49,000 is the median income. If they're not making close to that amount of money, they aren't middle class.

          •  I'm not an expert at it. All I can say is that I (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina, slouchsock

            know a few people who do it. They are all pretty middle class people and do make close to that amount of money. Teenage girls love this shit. I'm not saying I understand it I'm just saying it's not as  elitist as you think.

            Patriot: the person who can holler the loudest without knowing what he is hollering about. Mark Twain

            by Deathtongue on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 11:59:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Over here in Europe about $800/month (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            gramofsam1, slouchsock

            Starting off with the stabling, you are looking at €350 ($450) per month.

            Add to this vet fees, dentist fees, insurance, training, smith, tack, trailer hire and you won't see much change from $800.

            And then the horse itself!  Amateur competitions are at 4 levels - A, L, M and S  A level can be done with a nag or a pony, and it is usually just riders doing it for fun. Once a horse reaches L level, its value goes to about $10k. M level and you are looking at $20k and up.  S level is getting to semi pro, and for that you need some serious money.

          •  For many people who (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            eXtina, slouchsock

            participate in horse events, dog shows, etc.  -  That is their whole life!  We have friends who live dogs or horses.  They will go without 'stuff' for vet bills, feed, animal housing.  They do nothing else.  

            You can go just so far with talent, your own or ability to train the horse, but to get to the top levels you have to campaign to nationwide dog or horse shows.  

            In the dog show world, many times a dog will get so far and then sell the dog to someone with money who can pay the professional handler, the entry fees, the 24/7 care, the travel.  That is why on the entry lists you always see the breeders name too.  

            Being the local 4-H winner at the county fair with your horse, isn't going to get you to the Olympics, no matter how well you groom the horse.  That's when you look for a sponsor like the Romney's.  

            The difference with the Romney's and people at that level is they do the dressage thing AND the house on the beach with car elevator, AND the private plane with world-wide travel, AND jewelry from Tiffanys AND multiple homes and cars.  And when they tithe 10% to the Mormon Church, it doesn't even make a dent.  

            I think it is wonderful that they are interested in dressage and horses.  But I wish that they would stay at that level, and not think that it qualifies them to enter the WH.  

            You can see the decency of people like Axelrod and the Democrats, as opposed to Rove, who would be busy hatching wind surfing type ads, if the shoe were on the other foot.    

  •  It is possible (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mumtaznepal, Pluto

    to ride dressage without being in the Romney's tax bracket. Or, I should say, income bracket.

    Just as it's possible to play tennis or ski or swim without being at the training and expense level of world-class competitors, who are top dollar whatever the sport.

    Dressage requires a lot of patience and not an inconsiderable amount of skill. Good exercise, too.

    As I understand it, Ann Romney has used dressage riding as part of her therapy for a long-term disease, thus their tax deductions for it. I don't particularly agree with that aspect of it, but the US tax code is what it is.

    Republicans stand for raw, unbridled evil and greed and ignorance smothered in balloons and ribbons. -- Frank Zappa

    by Mnemosyne on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 09:55:57 PM PDT

    •  I've asked this question (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mnemosyne, Pluto

      I know lots of people who conduct some business in connection with their riding hobby to call it a tax deduction.
      I did a little exercise adding up what I thought would be typical expenses to campaign Rafalca for a year, which they took a deduction of $77k for. I easily without stretching came up with $77.3k, so I don't doubt they spent that much.
      Since Ebeling and not Romney is doing the training and competing it sounds to me like the IRS needs to get on this. Unless they want to argue that watching Ebeling train and ride Rafalca is 'therapeutic' to Romney.

      "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

      by eXtina on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:02:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not if the Romneys have the horses as a business, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        skohayes

        not a medical deduction.

        2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

        by mumtaznepal on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 11:06:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  How would they have it 'as a business' (0+ / 0-)

          that's the question. That would be some very creative accounting indeed.

          "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

          by eXtina on Mon Jun 18, 2012 at 05:50:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No. It's easy. You just have to show a profit (0+ / 0-)

            a few out of many years.  You sell the horse, there's the profit (if you do it right, most don't make a profit)

               Hundreds of thousands of people have their horses-farms as business deductions.   You only get in trouble if you are using it to subsidize your hobby, and you fail to make a profit.  The IRS will come down on you.

            2012: the Year of the Voting Woman. And by the way, Republicans ... we're pretty pissed about what you've done to our country. Republican Party Motto: "Tax the poor, gift the rich"

            by mumtaznepal on Mon Jun 18, 2012 at 01:57:31 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  so what is the minimum cost to participate? (0+ / 0-)

      At least this year, we have public swimming pools and tennis courts.

      Skiing? Not cheap. One can participate with school ski clubs, rented equipment, trading work as a lift operator for ski passes.
      But unless you live in a mountain town, you can't downhill ski without money.

    •  um, medical expenses have to be above 7.5% of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PinHole

      income to be deductible, at least for us proles.

  •  Romney has a million dollar horse (7+ / 0-)

    that competes in that well known neighborhood sport of dressage. Barack Obama loves basketball. Romney says Obama is out of touch.

    The definition of INSANITY: Voting Republican over and over and over and expecting the economy to get better.

    by pollbuster on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:10:50 PM PDT

  •  Ann Romney says she loves Rafalca, promises (4+ / 0-)

    not to lock her in a crate on top of a truck.

    The definition of INSANITY: Voting Republican over and over and over and expecting the economy to get better.

    by pollbuster on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:12:23 PM PDT

  •  Rafalca is a female, Romney refers to her (3+ / 0-)

    as an "it."

    The definition of INSANITY: Voting Republican over and over and over and expecting the economy to get better.

    by pollbuster on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:19:02 PM PDT

  •  When it comes down to it, (7+ / 0-)

    Rafalca Romney will have served America better than any of Romney's sons.

    The definition of INSANITY: Voting Republican over and over and over and expecting the economy to get better.

    by pollbuster on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:21:30 PM PDT

  •  Romney's spreading his horseshit globally. (4+ / 0-)

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 10:44:08 PM PDT

  •  croquet got four votes? (4+ / 0-)

    didn't every 1950's family that had a bicycle have a croquet set? It took a few wooden balls, a mallet and some wire.

  •  Anne You Can't Have A Horse Compete In Dressage (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rodentrancher, TofG

    I'm running for President for Pete's sake.

    If he wins are we going to have 4 years of a Mormon Camelot? When is the next flight off this planet?

  •  Elite or not.. (4+ / 0-)

    dressage at the Olympic level (as many have already pointed out) is expensive.

    Sure, I can become involved in the sport if I choose (school teacher here), but I am going to most likely have to a share a horse, have someone else board it, do most of the training myself (or trade my time at the stable for someone who can). It can be done cheaply, but the chances are slim that someone  who does it this way is going to the Olympics. (I'm sure someone will point me to the movie-of-the-week where this did indeed happen)

    I think the issue becomes similar to the car elevator. Someone who can afford to stable a horse, pay for a world-class trainer and pay for all the assorted costs of transporting horse and trainer across the Atlantic (my guess is private plane?? Last I looked horses don't fly coach) is someone who is, by most definitions, elite. Certainly rich. And, as has been shown, rich people tend to be out of touch with how the rest of us live.

    And that, more likely, is Romney's dressage problem.

  •  Fastening the horse carrier to the car roof . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TofG

    . . . is gonna be tricky.

  •  Politically (0+ / 0-)

    ... I don't think it's a winner to go after this on it being elitist, etc., but I do think the $70,000 + write-off they took on it could be.

    •  The New York Times reports: (0+ / 0-)
      The Romneys declared a loss of $77,000 on their 2010 tax returns for the share in the care and feeding of Rafalca, which Mrs. Romney owns with Mr. Ebeling’s wife, Amy, and a family friend, Beth Meyers.
      Deduction for horse feeding more then most Americans make all year, including cost of feeding their children.

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