How to get your first key signed

Robert J. Hansen rjh at
Thu Oct 1 22:17:06 CEST 2015

> Names are tremendously fluid instruments.  Charles Martel, the hero of
> France, didn't actually have a last name...

Oh, man -- I completely forgot the great one from modernity.  You can be
elected President under a pseudonym.  Not only that: *it's already
happened*.  President Ulysses Simpson Grant.

His real name was Hiram Ulysses Grant.  That's what's on his birth
certificate.  When he was seventeen he asked Congressman Thomas Hamer to
nominate him for West Point (the American Army's military college).
Hamer got the name wrong and wrote it down as "Ulysses Simpson Grant".
Grant refused to correct Hamer's error, though, as he thought that "U.S.
Grant" was a much better set of initials for a military officer than "HUG".

So if a pseudonym's good enough to get elected President of the United
States... is it a pseudonym at all?  Would you refuse to sign Ulysses S.
Grant's certificate on the grounds that "well, that isn't your *real* name"?

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