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How Similar is the PRA and the RFCP?

NORTHERN LIGHTS, UKAHALA: Using evidence from historic PRA sites and documents, the blog examines just how comparable the RFCP is to Prior Bumble’s original army.

Recently, the Recon Federation website, established 2019, surpassed the site traffic of the original People’s Republic Army, which has been live since 2007. This is an enormous moment for the RFCP, which can interpret these numbers as eclipsing the reach of what many consider to be its predecessor. Granted, the PRA website suffered serious losses of data, allegedly at the hands of Army of Club Penguin hackers long ago (after Prior Bumble’s retirement), making it hollow and bare.

It is nonetheless significant that RFCP in less than two years amassed more hits than the PRA in thirteen years. Below are the records at the time of this post’s publication:

People’s Republic Army:

Recon Federation of Club Penguin:

This occasion prompts us to look at the two armies and compare their characters. Soldiers of the RFCP are long used to hearing about how the PRA heavily influenced the RFCP (or, at least, influenced the RFCP more than any other army). But can they speak with confidence as to why that is the case? This post hopes to make some key arguments.

Governmental Structure

First, we will look at the governmental structure of the two armies. RFCP and PRA both follow a structure entirely unique to them: one first-in-command, one second-in-command. That is to say, only one person may occupy the role of first-in-command and only one person may occupy the role of second-in-command. As far as we know, no other Club Penguin Army ever held this structure.

While other advantages to this structure can be debated and theorized, such a system clearly benefits autocracy. Having one Commander, who chooses only one Commissar (second-in-command), certainly one who aligns with his vision, protects the Commander from heavy pushback among other officers.

The Peopleā€™s Republic Army is a Communist Peopleā€™s Republic, in which all power goes to a supreme ruler. There can be only one of these rulers at one time, and he makes all major decisions.

– From the 2013 PRA revival website.

The rank names were slightly tweaked from the PRA to the RFCP, however.

Did Prior Bumble follow the PRA’s structure out of reverence for his old army? Others might argue that the autocratic nature of Prior Bumble would have led him to form an authoritarian governmental structure regardless. Curiously, CollinZfresh described the PRA on the original 2007 website as not a Communist republic but a “Democratic Republic,” although none of his policies or governmental structures reflected this.

Contradicting statements

On the contrary, Prior Bumble has been pretty open about being an authoritarian.

Western ideologies often promote democracies and decentralized power as the only moral government structure. Perhaps it is too broad a stretch to add Club Penguin Army governments to the evidence of real-world nations, but in the scope of military institutions, democracy is seldom heard of. What makes authoritarianism in an army environment complicated is how most Club Penguin armies also seek to function as micronations, with no separation between citizen and soldier. Although not as vocal, other authorities in the community have sided with the style of Prior Bumble. RPF Rebel Commander Elmikey functioned much the same way as Prior Bumble while in charge, and DMT and Cena have both drawn likeness between the two leaders. Cena likewise operated in a similar fashion as Commander of Shock Troops.

“I distinctly remember a conversation with Lord Pain in which he said democracy among Club Penguin armies does not work. I tend to agree.”

– Prior Bumble

Further debate on democracy vs. autocracy in the Club Penguin Armies universe deserves its own post.

Comparisons Between Prior Bumble and CollinZfresh

Personality comparisons between Prior Bumble and CollinZfresh have been drawn. Both men were regarded as well-spoken and charming. Both men have been observed losing their temper; although, be it for lack of sources or true nature, CollinZfresh appears to have had better and more consistent composure.

Both leaders also wore profile pictures that advanced their statecraft, Collin with a photo of the U.S. Capital dome and Prior with an naval officer’s hat, rank O-7 and above.

CollinZfreh
Prior Bumble

Of course, in-game, Prior Bumble carried on PRA legacy by wearing the red PRA helmet as part of his Commander uniform.

Now, RFCP soldiers refer to CollinZfresh as Grandfather Collin, advancing the RFCP’s system of patriarchy. Patriarchy seems to be a feature exclusive to RFCP, as there is little evidence that the PRA made fatherly or with kinship the positions of high ranks.

Rules

Below is a screenshot of the original laws of the 2007 PRA. Highlighted in yellow are laws that have similar counterparts in the current policies of the RFCP.

PRA’s laws seem to be more focused on environmental roleplay than truly enforceable server rules. However, Rule #1 of no violence corresponds to RFCP’s policies against cyberbullying/racism, etc. Rule #4 corresponds to Prior Bumble’s infamous crackdowns of spinoff servers with RFCP members, both with the interest of keeping traffic centralized to his main server and to combat conspiracy and trash-talk. Spinoff servers were usually approved by him if a trusted officer presided in the server. Rule #5, likewise, is strictly echoed in the RFCP’s Constitution. Rule #8 reinforces the Prior Policy that excessive challenging him on his decisions will not be tolerated.

Regarding rule #6, RFCP never has collected money from its members, and Prior Bumble has allegedly spent over $2,000 USD of his own money on supporting his soldiers or providing merchandise to those who purchased them with Bumble Bucks.

Rule #7 would be unlikely to appear in a Prior Bumble administration, although the army’s communal discussion channel, #rfcp-summit, often welcomes and respects the voices of its enlisted.

“Number three [law] is cute,” said Prior. “I’d add that, maybe with an Int’ai’uto conservation spin.”

Below is the 2013 PRA revival code of law. Highlighted in yellow are laws that have similar counterparts in the current policies of the RFCP.

There Can Be Only One Law strongly echoes RFCP’s autocracy. The Recruiting Bill is similar to RFCP’s policies of centralization of activity to the RFCP server (enlisted must be in the server!). The Ground is the Limit Law is similar to RFCP’s no dual-enlistment law, except RFCP takes it much further by prohibiting ALL soldiers, not just the 1ic, from dual-enlisting.

Most striking to us was the Allies Neutral Bill, which permitted the PRA to enter an isolationist state at any time. This is remarkably similar to the RFCP’s policy of Ukahala.

Divisions

The PRA had a division of body guards for officers Lieutenant and above. This is comparable to RFCP’s Priortorian Guard.

From the ranks page of the 2007 PRA
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Conclusion

The People’s Republic Army was a small army with a big leader. CollinZfresh never achieved major army status but was inducted a full CPA Legend for his grand ideas and personality, and for being deeply intertwined with the politics of original army leaders. Some might consider Prior Bumble’s status almost identical. The armies these two men created were uniquely firm and autocratic in a landscape of armies with highly mobile social ladders. Evidence of correlation between policies and character exist, but, as the numbers of site traffic attests, it could be argued that the RFCP has surpassed the PRA in terms of breadth and identity.

What do YOU think? What other similarities and differences do you see between the PRA and the RFCP? Comment below!

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