In case you are not, this should be a learning opportunity...
Power cables in a PC are insulated. As long as they don't get caught in a fan to have them chopped off or cut open, a power cable touching a heatsink is no big deal. The heatsinks in a computer can get warm, but never hot enough to melt the insulation. If things did get that hot, the components on the PCBs would start falling off as well, as the solder keeping them on there would start to melt.
PC power cables should not need to be cooled. If a power cable in a PC gets warm, it's because there is something terribly wrong and generally results in something blowing up. The stuff that needs cooling are generally the silicon based hardware, they run at a much hotter temperature, sometimes as high as 120 degrees.
Fan configuration depends on many factors. People calling you a n00b for mounting fans "the wrong way" are a bit harsh. The temperatures you posted show some improvement, but it's hardly terrible in the fist place. That could be due to thermal throttling (something a you does to prevent it from overheating) or just that the cooling is good enough for the card. You'd generally find that a pull configuration is better for keeping noise under control and manages to cool a larger area, where as a push configuration would result in more air being delivered directly to the heatsink.
Fan types are also important, but that needs a whole article just to explain.
I think that the REAL lesson here is that if you're experimenting with equipment, and it's possible, then try as many combinations as possible. It took Edison 100's of tries to get his light-bulb correct, and stopping at the fans blowing just one way was really just lazy and unadventurous. Thanks for the follow-up.