Competitions with good judges can offer great feedback. I don't care what I win most of the time, and the only reason I'm slowing down entering competitions is because I've validated that my palate is as good as the national judges at the comps I've been to, and I can figure out what I want to do with my beer from that point.
I will judge going forward and enter in comps that have prizes like being able to brew on a professional system, but other than that, I don't need them anymore.
And I don't think there's anything wrong with people who want to compete. Sometimes the drive to win is what will make someone brew a better beer. This only helps the homebrew community because it pushes boundaries and produces tons of innovation that we all appreciate.