Commercial Space Exploration Needs an Obama Relaunch, Robert Walker and Charles Miller, Wall Street Journal (subscription) (Paste the article title into the Google search box and it will give you a link that works)
"NASA, in fact, has not successfully developed a new rocket in over three decades. U.S. private industry successfully developed three brand-new rockets in just the past decade--Boeing with the Delta IV, Lockheed with the Atlas V, and SpaceX with the Falcon 9. Industry succeeded because of a partnership with the government, much like the building of the transcontinental railroad in the 19th century. Industry was responsible for development and was taking large risks, but with government incentives. ,,,, A renewed and refocused NASA is critical to America's future. So as the country struggles with trillions in debt and deficits, it makes no sense for NASA to build rockets that are already available or can be developed at much lower cost by U.S. private industry. Why spend approximately $20 billion to build an unneeded SLS super-heavy-lift rocket, for instance, when existing commercial rockets can carry payloads more often, efficiently and cheaply?"