Wrong. I said mass manufacture - you don't have to re-engineer curiosity from scratch and hand-build it every time. And if you can pay to build a super-heavy-lift vehicle, or tons of smaller (but still very large) launches to get your ~100 tonne manned Mars round trip spacecraft into orbit, then you can launch a 100x 889kg curiosity rovers.
You literally can launch about 100 mass-manufactured curiosity-sized rovers for the cost of one manned mission. The scientific bang for your buck is way, way, way higher with robots.
My experience with these robotic projects points me in a different direction. They're fundamentally over-budget and no where near ready for mass-production. The support systems developed on the west coast took forever to test correctly, too. I'll admit that a different focus (like yours) could change that, but history hasn't shown that with products like this. However, private companies are definitely making a better push for launch systems.
And FYI, if your goal is to be able to help people "live on another planet", then you absolutely should not be supporting wasting money on a trip to Mars on today's way overpriced launch systems. You should be supporting spending it on developing novel systems for orders-of-magnitude reduction of launch prices, be they scramjets, launch loops, coilguns, metastable fuels, nuclear thermal propulsion, or in general insert-your-favorite-potential-cost-reducer-here, so that it doesn't cost an impractical amount of money to send people there. (never mind that we're not even centuries away from being able to recreate a full self-sustainable tech tree on Mars.. see earlier in the thread)
I never indicated anything different on improvements in launch schemes. I certainly support better launch systems. I more back one-way systems that deliver people on site. We probably will never find middle ground on that but there are just too many variables that require a human decision-maker on site to accomplish by my estimation. If delivery wasn't an issue (work with me!) the best solution in my mind is getting an invested populace into the "new country" and supporting an economy. Robots cannot do that on any reasonable schedule that doesn't last lifetimes.
I always find it funny to hear people the same alt-space fanboys complaining vitriolically about how maintaining ISS is a huge waste of money but then insisting that we set up a manned outpost that would cost orders of magnitude more to maintain
My only complaint for the ISS is that it was rather underwhelming. We've plenty of money to give the NFL billions in tax breaks but true investment in the science of our species' survival (in the ISS) doesn't even get pennies in comparison.