Our final person of the year isn't a person at all. We're aware that this is some kind of a breach of trading standards; you wouldn't eagerly await a new type of chocolate bar, for example, only to unwrap it and discover that it's a baby elephant carefully seasoning a pot of soup. Some kind of consistency is usually desired, but we stand by our decision because there is only one way to wrap up this feature.

Our fifth and final person of the year is God.

Before we begin, an aside: for the purposes of this article, God is female. This is the way we prefer to think of God. However, you can think of Her as the more traditional Him if you prefer; for all we know She's a tiny fungus clinging desperately to the tail of a giraffe, so it's not any less correct than anything else. Just acknowledge Her in your own way, as the slightly New Age religious education teacher at my middle school used to say. (It's good to masturbate, he'd often add. He didn't stay at the school for very long.)

This year, God has done splendidly. Not only have we had the usual war and famine, but we've also had a giant earthquake in Iran, some highly dubious ethnic cleansing in Israel, and the continued quasi-fame of David Blaine. Hundreds of people continue to die in Her name because they feel forced into a desperate action by a combination of political action and inaction, and have been convinced they will receive an eternal reward in the Kingdom of Heaven.

In the United States - a country that prides itself on being "under God", presumably so it won't blow away in the wind - the Project for the New American Century's political coup in 2000 is beginning to pay off. A deeply conservative American administration is as busy as a herd of almighty bees, laying the foundation for a capitalistic empire built on corporate greed and military brutality. God has also continued to allow homosexuals to be treated like second class citizens, due to some highly scurrilous interpretations of the Bible with regard to marriage.

Most importantly, however, God has been responsible for the continued existence of assorted conservative Christian organisations - and it is for this alone that we bestow upon Her the 5th Person of the Year award. These are people who believe that Israel must be returned to the Jews so that Jesus can come again and slaughter anyone who doesn't convert to Christianity. These are people who believe that Harry Potter is not just bad children's literature, but actually a solid endorsement of Satan the Dark Lord. These are people who believe a thirteen year old must give birth to a child whose father raped her - even if that person is also her father, and even if the birth will kill her. If nothing else, they provide some much-needed entertainment in this era of Adam Sandler films and bad cable TV, and we thank our Almighty Mother for continuing to lumber us with them. Huzzah.