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Dear Crikey readers, it’s time.

As you busily tick off your shopping list, sup on eggnog and prepare to hang your stockings, take some time to reflect upon the heroes, the villains and just plain boring-if-sexy people of 2009.

Yes, mingled with the sweet summer fragrance of sun cream and plastic tinsel is the scent of humiliation — the Crikey Annual Arsehats are back.

Nominate now in our time-honoured end-of-year categories:

Crikey’s Person of the Year (a nice award. We can keep it nice when we want to, you know).

The ever-popular (for some unknown reason) Australia’s Sexiest Politician (boy and girl divisions. Nothing suss).

We also have, for their second year, the Crikey Arsehat Awards, a range of key categories climaxing in what is destined to become a landmark in Australian public life, Crikey’s Golden Arsehat for the most appalling person of the year.

Today we’re asking for your nominations, and, in the Person of the Year and Golden Arsehat categories, a brief supporting statement, if you’d be so kind.

On Friday we will run a briefer survey bringing the top nominations together for the actual voting. Then, next Wednesday, the 23rd of December to be precise, just before we adjourn for our summer break, we’ll name this year’s winners.

So nominate now. In the survey that follows you’ll find space to enter a single name in each category.

Think carefully and nominate wisely: their Arsehats are in your hands.

Vote here.

Peter Fray

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