This is why investors "performance chase." The best performing hedge funds (and mutual funds) will always attract the most capital. After all, performance is what it's all about. Most investors will overlook lots of quirks, ethical lapses and hard-to-follow musings about the state of the markets in investor letters, if the money manager performs. The longer and better he or she performs, the more leash we give him or her (like Madoff) or the more we celebrate him (like Peter Lynch, Lampert and now Paulson). But past performance (and a fund's ability to raise capital) is no guarantee of future success. Investors should judge money managers on their current ideas. If you'd done so when John Paulson made his argument for why to bet against housing in 2006 and 2007 -- despite the fact that he wasn't a "housing guy" -- you made a lot of money. His pro-gold and pro-financials views now should be also judged on their merits, not because "John Paulson thinks so." Of course, you and I will probably never have the chance to place money with Paulson. So this lesson becomes even more important. How are you going to know the next John Paulson when you bump into him or her? Finally, let's turn to the critique of "Paulson will never do it again." Most people assume that smart people will, over time, outperform their peers. This is true. Yet, we also know smart people drove Enron, WorldCom and Lehman Brothers off cliffs -- all companies that, before their collapses, had been celebrated in the financial media with books written about them "getting it" while their competitors didn't. How can this happen and how can Paulson avoid this fate?