Captain Binghamton (above, right) had as his sidekick “Elroy” (Lt. Elroy Carpenter) on the old TV show, “McHales Navy.” Elroy was the sycophantic assistant to Captain Wallace B. Binghamton. Elroy was always sucking up to Capt. Binghamton, trying to advance his career.
And so too was Edwin Stanton, Secretary of War under Abraham Lincoln, like Elroy, accustomed to sucking up to William Seward, the Secretary of State. Recorded Navy Secretary Gideon Welles in his diary, “Mr. Seward always looked upon [Edwin] Stanton as his protégé, and Stanton, who, with all his frankness, real and assumed, had, towards his superiors in position or intellect, some of the weaker qualities of a courtier, was studious to continue the impression that he was dependent upon and a follower of the Secretary of State [i.e., Seward].”
But once “Elroy” (Edwin Stanton) was promoted (to Secretary of War), “Mr. Stanton was fond of power and of its exercise. It was more precious to him than pecuniary gain to dominate over his fellow man. He took pleasure in being ungracious and rough towards those who were under his control, and when he thought his bearish manner would terrify or humiliate those who were subject to him.” (Welles, Gideon)
The “Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale” in all this was Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy. Captain Binghamton and Elroy (Seward and Stanton) craved power. Seward was trying to undermine and/or supersede the efforts even of President Abraham Lincoln. Seward tried to make himself the gate keeper to any Cabinet meetings. (Background: “Fort Sumter Machinations”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog entry of March 22, 2013) As for “McHale” (Gideon Welles), Captain Binghamton and Elroy did not like the independence shown and seethed to crush it. There was, according to Welles, a tussle over if the War Department had control over the Navy Department. Stanton assumed the Navy was secondary and subject to control by the War Department. “These pretensions,” wrote Welles, “which had agitated each branch of the service, I never recognized, but stated that we were equal and would be ready at all times to coöperate with the armies in any demonstration, but it must not be under orders.” The coöperation of the Navy must be asked, insisted Welles. “Stanton claimed that, instead of consulting and asking, the military could order naval assistance, and that it was the duty of the Secretary of the Navy and of naval officers to render it. President Lincoln would not, however, lend himself to this view of the subject.”
But where does Abraham Lincoln fit in, with the above “McHales Navy” parallel? I say President Lincoln was “Fuji” (Fuji Kobiaji, Japanese POW), apparently a nobody but really having secret power, as evident in his remarkable circumstances while under the wardenship of “McHales Navy.”