If you can read the fonts, there is a preflight routine for embedding fonts I think. You may be able to embed them with PDF Optimize. This does not always work for me. You say that printing to a new PDF is a kludge, but I find it often to be the easiest way to get the fonts embedded. Before printing and rescanning, I would save as a TIFF and then reopen the TIFF files in Acrobat as a new PDF -- a lot simpler than printing and scanning and with better quality. I consider the scanning or equivalent to be a lot more of a kludge than just printing to a new PDF.
Did you look under preflight. I can do that later on my tablet and see what is there. As I recall, there is a setup to embed fonts, but then I could be wrong. If so, that is by far the cleanest way to get the fonts embedded. When you save, be sure to use Save As. If you want to save as a prior version, use either Reduce File Size or PDF Optimize in Acrobat.
Need Acrobat 9 Pro or Pro Extended -
Advanced > Preflight
In the Preflight dialog, open the "Options" drop-down menu and select "Create New Preflight Profile".
Give the new profile a name & save it.
In the dialog, at the left you'll see your new profile.
Locate and click on "Fixups" (2nd from bottom).
Over to the right, over the listing of fixups that appears, there is a find/search field.
Enter "embed" (the first three letters will do).
Two fixups are available.
--| Embed Fonts
--| Embed Fonts (even if text is invisible)
Select one. Under the fixup list there is an arrow pointed to the left. Click it. The center pane will display the selected fixup.
Click Save then OK.
The profile is available for use.
A Batch Sequence could be made that uses this Preflight profile to permit processing many PDFs at "one go".
[If you do not want to DIY, then use the "out of the box" profile located in the PDF fixups Group.
Both "Embed" profiles are there.]
Message was edited by: CtDave
If you've not already come across it -
Rick Borstein's Blog has an article that may be of interest to you
(or others involved with USPTO submissions).
"PDF Creation and Font Embedding for USPTO Submissions"
n.b., Rick's article closes with a reference to PDF being submitted to ISO for consideration.
Since mid-2008, PDF has been an ISO Standard (32000).