The DSN doesn't appear to be that terribly over-booked.
BTW: we're talking about Opportunity not Curiosity. Either way, I'm sure university students would love a chance at that thing and wouldn't charge a penny. There's still plenty to be learned from Opportunity, and last I knew it hadn't even reached it's last science destination.
Since when does the quality of customer service become the purview of law? There are no dishonest dealings going on. Customers enter into these purchases fully aware of the requirements of ownership. No one expects Walmart to provide a service center for the electronics they sell, nor a seamstress for their clothing.
This is protectionism and corrupt politics as can only be done at the local level pure and simple.