Just Encase They Think You're Stupid

Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid is a fictional easy read on the real time hot environmental topic of green coatings solutions. It answers how and why potentially hazardous materials such as Asbestos, Lead Based Painted surfaces and other questionable building stock can benefit from the use of high performance, low VOC green coatings. The credible characters in this book explain the historic and present uses of the hazardous materials and discuss the complications associated with their removal. Common misconceptions are corrected revealing a simple method that can safely and cost effectively manage them in-place. Studies show that 42% of the CO2 emissions causing green house gases are coming from landfills filled with unwanted waste, much of it from roof tear offs. Simply said, green coatings can be used to recycle and renovate existing buildings and roofs, extending their life cycle and avoiding expensive demolition, tear offs, transportation and disposal.


I have purchased a number of copies of this book since it first came out to pass around to friends who seemed interested in the subject, some with very little previous knowledge (like me) of how strong and flexible good quality coatings could be. Inevitability the feedback has been extremely positive, not just for support for the helpful science included but for how the tale is told with humor and straight talk.

Each time we see an old roof being replaced instead of encased it now seems like a missed opportunity. Knowledge of why also choosing a white color option for roof coating makes so much sense both for the environment and for the cooling effect $$ is also growing (see recent articles in NY times and elsewhere).

Change takes time but it seems home and other property owners, building operators and managers of government buildings as well as those entrusted with overseeing or spending tax dollars wisely will be helped by knowing what is covered in this book…

Adhiratha Keefe

Just finishing reading the book and I can’t help but start to write a review of it right away. Let’s just say that I was personally touched by this read.

Just recently the Philippines, my homeland, more specifically the Luzon area, has been terribly flooded by the waters of what you call the Southwest Wind or the “Habagat”. There was no storm but heavy rains continued to fall for days causing a lot of places to flood. What has been causing this? They all say it is due to the mismanaged garbage that has been blocking the flood ways, and of course the poorly planned infrastructures. True! Everywhere in the Philippines we can see trash improperly disposed. I guess we haven’t really trained ourselves to dispose of garbage the proper way. At some point in time I can say that I too am guilty of this.

Having said this, I guess it is the same way with asbestos and lead-based paint. At some point in time, when man did not know any better, it was then a good idea to use these materials for the benefits they could give our homes and buildings. But through time, research and experience, we have discovered that these materials are indeed not safe. But it can be made safe with the simple process of encasing them with GEI’s green coatings.

Mr. Keefe’s book has made me realize that sometimes it is best to deviate from the norm, which in this case is removal and replacement, and to be bold enough and do the unpopular if it would be beneficial to many in the end. Sometimes we tend to comfortably go with the flow just because we have been so accustomed to it. This book has made me realize that nature has already been giving us signals and telling us, “hey! Wake up! It’s time to take care of me!”. I have two girls beside me now that I wish could still enjoy the best of nature and mother earth has to offer. I cannot do this alone. We need to be working together to accomplish the task. Let’s start by being bold and saying “I have woken up and I am not stupid!”.

Marianne Caringal

You’d think that a book about abatement of asbestos and lead would be a hard read, but with “Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid”, you couldn’t be more wrong.

If I could describe this book in a word, it would be “Thoughtful”. George C. Keefe gives much needed insight on the often misunderstood process of abatement versus removal of hazardous building material. By utilizing engaging characters like “Chief” and his panel of crusaders, he manages to bring out a lot of valid arguments. The in-depth research regarding the pros and cons of in-place management of asbestos and lead has definitely given me a better understanding of the processes and costs, both environmental and financial, involved.

As a mother of two and a business owner, I can say that my way of formulating and executing solutions is heavily influenced by logic, empathy, and efficiency. Based on the explanations provided, using green coatings for encasing asbestos and lead fits all three of my requirements. It is simply more logical to keep the original materials in-place so they can do their jobs. Green coatings are environmental friendly and does not affect pregnant women and children during application, thus preventing unfortunate medical concerns in the future. Encasing asbestos and lead with quality coatings can last for years, thus saving on cost of removal and also decreasing the contribution of environmental waste in the long run.

At the moment, our house was recently renovated and, because they looked old, the asbestos roofing shingles were moved to the first floor. The replacement roof is now made of thin, cheaply made, Galvanized Iron (G.I.) Sheets that moan and groan in the face of strong winds. Our old, heavier roof didn’t do that. It’s been less than a year and it seems we may be in need of another roof replacement. The total cost would be more than what we would have spent IF we only knew we could have encased the whole thing. Worse, since the old asbestos roofing is now being used on the first floor, it’s this closer to contaminating our household.

This type of ignorance has led to a waste of much needed funds and to a health risk we could have avoided in the first place.

If only I could have read George Keefe’s book before all this happened.

I definitely recommend “Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid” to EVERYONE who has asbestos or lead concerns, whether they be in a skyscraper, or just within your home.

Micaela Pimentel - Mother, Writer, Entrepreneur

If you are looking for information regarding the costs of managing asbestos and lead, “Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid” is the book for you. It’s a light read, a book you could finish within a day or two at the most, yet it packs an informative (and at times, humorous) punch.

The book delivers facts and figures regarding removal versus in-place management of hazardous building materials like asbestos and lead. It gives you different perspectives on both processes and shows how majority opinions can be changed by approaching the subject using laymen’s terms. Encasement and coatings may either be too complicated or too over-simplified if not explained correctly. The use of the “Encased” bottle here is perfect for the job. Using the same coating used for asbestos and lead abatement and “encasing” the glass bottle, the bottle is then thrown thereby shattering the glass. However, the coating is still in place in the bottle’s old form, safely keeping the dangerous shards of glass in place. This could be the best visual presentation of how these products and systems can best manage asbestos and lead, especially when those materials are doing their intended jobs in the first place.

Another excellent point is the Ben Franklin chart where it clearly sorts out the facts between abatement and full blown removal. The differences in financial costs, environmental effects, and long term sustainability are clearly written. You can’t go wrong with making intelligent decisions based on this book!

P.S. I never did get to know where Lyn and Marcos were during their delay.

Georgina R. Banzon - Marketing, PR & Fundraising Consultant, MFI Foundation

Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid, was a real eye opener and a thoroughly entertaining read. I have dealt with a lot of hazardous products and materials in the past 25+ years through my time with the military and now as a contractor and encasement of hazardous materials such as asbestos or lead based paints, where you can utilize environmentally safe, green products had never occurred to me, as the old and used systems have been the mainstay of this type of industry, though terrible to the environment.

George’s humorous, but serious and well versed and experienced explanation of systems and applications opened my eyes greatly, there IS A PRACTICAL SOLUTION, I read page after page opening up new knowledge and George’s book created a new pro-green person.

I will and have recommended this wonderful book as it can help us environmentally for the future of us and our children. Great stuff George.

Brandon Williams - Deputy Director Veracity GmbH, Philippines

Thought provoking and entertaining. This book will increase your hazardous material abatement “IQ.”

“Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid” is the most practical and intelligent narrative I have yet to uncover on how to successfully manage hazardous materials (asbestos!) “in place.” The innovative – dare I say revolutionary – approach championed by Mr. Keefe has the potential to generate real change. His solution is cost-effective, time efficient and environmentally sound. “Knowledge plus action is power” and this book provides the knowledge – it’s up to us to take action.

Tracy Nazzaro - Vice President of Aldebaran Partners

“Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid” is a great book. It is an easy-read with all the information you need to know about lead based paint and asbestos and how to safely manage them with “In place management”. Although the book has the information someone would find in a study, the “myth” George C. Kefee created around it makes it fun and interesting to read while providing you with detailed information and statistics about the pros and cons of lead based paint and asbestos, the dangers of leaving them untreated and the benefits of “in place management”.

I was very excited I purchased and read the book, because it made me aware of materials that are dangerous in my living environment that I never thought of. In fact, being an owner of an old home that is being currently under renovation gave me a whole new perspective of how I should start thinking and acting in a completely different way.

The characters of the book are fun, drawing a clear line between the “good guys” and the “bad guys”, which made me think of them as the super heroes of a comic book trying to save the earth from the villains who want to destroy it.

The book is a must read, both for the fun and educational part of it, especially for those people that have no knowledge on the subject – like me. I highly recommend it.

Marina Kontouli, Greece

I don’t think many people understand the dangers of many of the substance we deal with in our daily life. Most of us have grown up with these items lying around that we have never questioned it or though about the risk these substance pose to our daily life. This is especially true for lead based paints and asbestos.

“Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid” was an eye opener, it gave me a new perspective into what the dangers are that is around us, that many a times goes unnoticed or we take for granted. It also gave me a better perspective of how these can be contained or abated to ensure the safety of our community and family.

George outlined the dangers and also benefits of abatement so simply in this book that it is a must read for anyone who want to understand what they are up against and what the best way is to ensure a safe environment for our future generation.

Fast, informative & witty read!

A customer of mine recommended this book when we were responsible for exploring alternative solutions for expensive abatement contracts. Similar to “The Goal” by Eliyahu Goldratt helping understand fundamentals of process improvement, this book uses characters like “Chief” and a crew of “testifiers” to help non-technical folks understand and position alternative and often disruptive technologies. I also enjoyed the historical background of how long hazardous materials have been around – and known to be hazardous – long before modern usage. All in all, a neat book that isn’t hard on the brain but leaves you better educated on important issues and especially useful when working through challenging environmental issues.

“Just Encase They Think You’re Stupid”

The title of this book is not only a reminder of this political campaign season,but a welcome addition to the lexicon of environmentally friendly abatement processes and procedures.

I highly recommend this pithy tome that addresses a serious, and all too often neglected problem: yes George, we really can take the toxicity out of our politics and our environment.

Five stars from The Chisholm Group, Washington, DC http://www.thechisholmgroup.com

Stephen J. Chisholm Founder, President and Managing Director The Chisholm Group Washington, DC Portland, Maine Philadelphia, Pa. Bogota, Colombia Lima, Peru

Leave a review

Translate »