NASA May Outsource
Space operations haven't been a real money maker for private companies yet. Yes, a few make some launches on their own, but the vast majority of launches are done with Government support and equipment.
NASA (Government) should be developing the technology (this part is expensive) so private industry can offer services. It is probably non-realistic to expect a private company to expend a billion or so dollars for an unproven (and possibly non-viable) technology.
Private industry can improve on what NASA develops and offer services. The outsourcing of services is reasonable. The development of the basic capability is not, at least until there is some hope of profit for the private company. The stockholders will not stand for pie-in-the-sky projects that may or may not be profitable 10 years from now.
As bad as the Government bureaucracy is in long range planning I'm afraid no one else will even try because the threat of failure is too great. Unfortunately the Government can't even do this right...sigh.
The Taste Of Space
Have they found anything that tastes like chicken? Rattle snakes supposedly do and they're sorta like dragons. We should be looking at Draco!
Ted Stevens Loses Senate Re-Election Bid
Yes, but it could also mean that the alternative choice is even worse than the berated incumbent.
Maryland (my state) is just about all Democratic. The Republicans often run some turkey just to have a race. The results are usually embarrassing to the Republicans, but at least they tried.
As a registered Republican I've been frustrated year after year having to vote for the Democrat (usually the incumbent) because the Republican was clearly unqualified.