I don't mind the focus on robotics AT ALL. Humans have a VERY hard time up there with the currently available space ships/technology - just because we find enough volunteers (>200,000 just applied for that one-way(!!!) trip to Mars) doesn't mean it's worth it.
No, my point is the country doesn't seem to be willing, able, interested, etc. to do even THAT.
Oh yes, there's the "money" argument. The sad part is that people completely mix up the very different meanings of "money" on small (individuals, businesses, municipalities, small countries with dependent currencies) and large (countries with the power to control currency) scale. There wasn't a pot of money with xxx billion dollars given to Adam and Eve or to our ape ancestors with which we now have to live. When a whole society like the US (with a world currency) decides to create something like a huge road network, or a huge power grid, or a 4g network - or a space program, then money and the values that money stands for are created at the same time. Sure, that only works if there is access supply of labor and resources, not if everyone is already working and the country is starving, but those conditions are met in the US. They prefer to give trillions to too-big-to-fail banks and to the military, prisons, health care (where the US has the by far highest cost but less favorable outcomes than comparable western countries), and so on.
And by the way, Silicon Valley was NOT the result of the "entrepreneurial spirit" and of private capital but of long-term government investments: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTC_RxWN_xo