(Image: Tom Red/Private Media)

Depending on who you ask, former UK prime minister Tony Blair is either a ghoulish neoliberal hypocrite with blood on his hands over Iraq, or a political genius who returned British Labour from the wilderness, presiding over a period of stability, growth and optimism that now feels very foreign.

Either way, Blair is not going quietly. Last week he fired a rocket-launcher at the smouldering rubble of the party he once led in the form of a 3000-word article published by the New Statesman. Labour and centre-left parties around the Western world were in danger of dying out. Dominated by "radical" voices increasingly obsessed with identity politics, moderates were being silenced, and Labour's traditional blue-collar base was being turned away in droves.

"The progressive problem is that in an era where people want change in a changing world ... the radical progressives aren’t sensible and the sensible aren’t radical," he said.