I’ll admit that I remember that piece for a different passage, one about Rubin and a team of U.S. officials meeting at the Jefferson Hotel in Washington to figure out what to do about a looming crisis in Korea.

When Rubin finally spoke, he emphasized the limits of America’s influence. He wasn’t persuaded that sending more money would be a decisive enough step to restore the confidence of international creditors and investors, who had poured capital into Korea as if it were a fixed fight, and were now fleeing as if it had become radioactive. At the end of the dinner, after one of his regular measured indulgences — four scoops of cassis sorbet — Rubin postponed the decision.

Four scoops of sorbet! Cassis!

Anyway, it’s quite a trajectory, from being way up, to so far down that people don’t want to admit on the record that they like the guy.

And yet, as Politico tells it, the same person is still getting lots of face time with the people in charge.

Hmm. Let me see if I get this straight: So, he’s inside-up, outside-down?

Holly Yeager is CJR's Peterson Fellow, covering fiscal and economic policy. She is based in Washington and reachable at holly.yeager@gmail.com.