From the Web site After more repayments this week, the Treasury announced taxpayers have recovered about $244 billion of the $245 billion in TARP funds disbursed to banks, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Treasury currently estimates that bank programs within TARP will ultimately provide a lifetime profit of nearly $20 billion to taxpayers. * * * * It’s uncanny how lucky Rick Perry is. How many politicians could be completely wrong about a major issue and have their misjudgment serve as his springboard to victory? Perry and the tea parties were totally wrong about the bailout. It has been evident for some time that the bailout would turn out to be an unqualified success and clearly was the right thing to do. But this is hindsight. At the moment of truth, being wrong was being right–politically. Not only has Perry not paid a price for being wrong; it was the issue that propelled him to victory in the Republican primary over Kay Bailey Hutchison, who did the right thing and voted for the bailout. One of the many bad decisions the Hutchison campaign made was to let Perry’s criticism of her support for the bailout go unchallenged. Her third-rate consultant team didn’t have a clue. Hutchison should have defended her vote. It was her only chance. She might have said something like, “It’s easy to sit in Austin and criticize Washington. I’m proud that I supported the president of the United States when he needed my vote to save our financial system. As your governor, I will always do what I think is right.” Hutchison was right, Perry was wrong. Today he is serving his third term, and Hutchison’s career is at an end. There’s a lesson there somewhere.