Nov 19, 2013 by

Thomas-Ratliff-TT“Irony of Ironies: Thomas Ratliff Accusing Others of Being Unethical”

by Donna Garner



Where to start…When irony is almost too much to bear, all we can do is to try even harder to communicate the truth.


On 11.18.13, the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram editorial board members published an article ( in which they discussed recent complaints filed with the Texas Ethics Commission against conservatives. 


One of these TEC complaints was filed against Alice Linahan, a private citizen who is advocating against CSCOPE and Common Core Standards because she knows these programs are meant to indoctrinate rather than to educate this and future generations of American children.


Thomas Ratliff is the one who filed the TEC complaint against Alice Linahan, but the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram editorial board conveniently failed to mention Thomas Ratliff’s name probably because they knew readers would be disenchanted with the editorial board’s article if Ratliff’s name had been revealed. Thomas Ratliff’s “warts” are showing, and many Texans are incensed that he remains on the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) illegally.  


The Tex. Attorney General’s office (TAG) has stated that registered lobbyists with a conflict of interest should not serve on the SBOE. Because Microsoft sells products to the Texas Education Agency and does business with the SBOE through the Permanent School Fund, Ratliff’s obvious conflict of interest cannot be “cured.”  (Please see documentation posted at the bottom of this article.)


Ignoring the TAG’s ruling, Ratliff has continued to stay on the SBOE while Texans throughout the state are signing a petition to pressure  the Texas House to begin articles of impeachment against Ratliff.


Alice Linahan is one of those who is leading the effort to impeach Ratliff.  Even though Alice is one of the leaders of Women on the Wall and (both 501(c)4 political groups), she is spending money out of her own pocket and taking hours away from her her own family to drive around Texas to hold grassroots meetings to inform the public about CSCOPE, Common Core Standards, and the federalizing of education in our public schools. 



Thankfully on 11.14.13, the TEC rejected Thomas Ratliff’s complaint because it was based upon “thin air.”     



On 11.18.13, Fox News carried the story entitled “’IT’S A DIRTY TACTIC’ Texas Common Core critic refutes lobbying claim” —


Excerpts from this article:

Alice Linahan has spoken out against CSCOPE, which has been likened to the Lone Star State’s own version of the controversial national Common Core Standards Initiative. Like the national program, which is not in effect in Texas, CSCOP attempts to make certain academic standards uniform for all students. Like the national program, it has drawn criticism from parents and activists…

Linahan said that if someone is paying her for her efforts, it’s news to her. The group she founded, Voices Empower, speaks out against CSCOPE simply because Linahan and other members believe it keeps parents in the dark about their children’s lesson plans…

The motion however, was rejected by the commission for lack of evidence to support his claims. And Ratliff even admits in his original filing to not have concrete proof.

“I have not been able to determine who her client is, or if her compensation exceeds the statutory threshold for lobbying or preparing to lobby since she has not publicly disclosed her client or compensation related to this issue…

Linahan, alleges that Ratliff’s filing against her is nothing new and that it’s often a tactic he uses against opponents.

“He uses these filings to marginalize the competition,” she said. “I think it’s a dirty tactic, but he doesn’t like me very much.”

Linahan says that she has called for Ratliff to be removed from the state education board in the past, citing that it is improper because he actually is a lobbyist, for Microsoft. The softward company is a big player in K-12 curriculum.

“That’s a huge issue for parents,” she said. “My outspokenness may have irritated him little, but I’m not doing it to attack him personally.”

“I don’t think a paid lobbyist for Microsoft should be making decisions without the best interests of the public in mind.”


To read Alice LInahan’s original response to Thomas Ratliff’s TEC complaint, please go to:


Excerpts from Alice’s original article:


Yep you heard that right. Texas State Board of Education Elected Official/ Microsoft Lobbyist Thomas Ratliff filed an Ethics Complaint against me saying the work I am doing fighting against CSCOPE/Common Core is unethical because I am not registered as a paid lobbyist. Really Thomas? I would love to know who it is that is paying me to fight this battle. I haven’t seen the pay check. 

Apparently State Board of Education Elected Official/ Microsoft Lobbyist Thomas Ratliff thinks I should be compensated for all the hard work I do daily to fight against the #FedLedEd better known as CSCOPE/Common Core that is coming into our children’s schools; public, private and charter schools I might add. I just wish he would share with me how he does it. The getting compensated part of it. 

I can assure you my husband is tired of me spending so much time working for no compensation on this issue. We had a discussion last week about it as a matter a fact because I have been away from home so much. My husband said the kids are the ones who are missing out on their mother being home. To which I replied if I don’t fight for them now even though I am not getting paid and I do not get to be with them like I want to….. they will not have freedom, and the blessings we have enjoyed. I am willing to sacrifice now because if I don’t they will blame me later for not fighting for their future. 

I actually had to laugh when I saw in the Ethics complaint a picture of the 4 new tires I posted when one of my tires blew out on the way to the SBOE Adhoc hearing. I did not make it by the way.

My husband was not happy about paying for the 4 new tires because I had put over 30,000 miles in 9 months traveling around the state warning parents about CSCOPE/Common Core. 

…Parents have every right to question what is being taught to our children and if Thomas Ratliff believes that it is un-ethical for me to do that well all I have to say is….

Bring it on!!

Let’s start comparing notes Thomas Ratliff on your lobbying activities and my supposed lobby activities.


To sign the petition to impeach Thomas Ratliff, please go to: 


To read the most recent rules on lobbying published by the Texas Ethics Commission, please go to:



To read the Texas Ethics Commission’s rejection of Thomas Ratliff’s bogus ethics complaint against Alice Linahan dated 11.14.13, please go to:





8.22.13 – “Another Microsoft Product Bought by TEA”  —!msg/friendsttprw/dMQ1PXwGOsw/syoHcaKecgcJ



8.20.13 — “Record of Thomas Ratliff’s Recusal Votes on Texas State Bd. of Education” — Originally posted by Donna Garner on 8.20.13 and reposted on 11.20.13 —



8.19.13 – “Thomas Ratliff – Big Bucks from Microsoft – Lobbied for SB 6 and CSCOPE” —



8.13.13 – “Ratliff’s SBOE Squatter Status: Microsoft Ties Add to Impropriety, Ineligibility” – by LouAnn Anderson —



3.8.13 – “Above the Law: Thomas Ratliff” – by Jan Shedd —




8.10.11 — “Latest Outrage Committed by Thomas Ratliff” — by Donna Garner —




4.3.11 — “Thomas Ratliff’s Brazen Gall” by Donna Garner —




3.15.11 — “Thomas Ratliff’s False Sense of Security” by Donna Garner




Donna Garner

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.