"Whereas Congress has determined that a US owned manned space station is in the national interest, be it resolved that the Treasurer of the United States is directed to pay, and payment is hereby authorized, to the first American owned firm to place 14 Americans in orbit about the Earth and maintain them there continuously for a period of not less than 18 months, the sum of Seven Billion dollars, this payment to be free of taxes."
Which is foolish - I know why it won't work. Same reason we had troops in Somalia, same reason people starve in the middle of the richest farming counntry in Asia. Politics.
Hat tip to J.E. Pournelle.