Why have competion when there is government pay $^nth aamount?
Not to rip NASA but in some regards NASA should be doing the research o the new technologies to get us there! But then why has not anyone taken over the shuttle into a private business? As fantastic a mechanical marvel the shuttle is, it was designed by committee. The DOD put some serious design requirements way back in the 1970's for one. And don't forget our dear congress had their collective fingers in the pot adding more pork to the whole design. So any business that wanted to buy the shuttle for a private venture, would also be getting all the associated businesses, friend and competitors. A good comparison would be if Ford bought the Saturn model from GMC. But the purchase included that the some of the parts were still made by GMC.
With the governments the 'only' game in town every one is a winner, and a loser. We all got something, just only by committee of the biggest lobbies.