Re: This is Nuts.
Universities don't exist to benefit Universities or Shareholders, but Humanity , The Nation and Business development.
Then when Humanity, The Nation, and Business decide to fund the universities, they can stop seeking patents for the results of their research.
Since you clearly live in a cave, you may be interested to know that state support for universities (particularly including the "public" ones that are supposed to be funded by the state) in the US has dropped precipitously over the past several years. Michigan State's revenue from the state was cut by $12M last year. That kind of money adds up. Federal research money is not a very deep pool when it's spread across all the research universities in the country. The mechanism for businesses to pay for university research is ... wait for it ... patents.
So in fact "humanity", primarily in the form of student loans, pays much - too much - of the costs of academia. "Technology transfer" - licensing the intellectual property created by researchers - is a way to divert some of that cost to businesses, who in return get increased profits due to novel or improved products, greater efficiencies, etc.
What's "nuts" is the inability of many supposedly-educated people to understand simple economics.
 Do you mean the nation-state under whose political authority the university resides, or the left-wing newspaper? Just curious.
 OK, so that's clearly a gross oversimplification for rhetorical effect. The primary way business helps fund education is by hiring graduates, paying back their investment in tuition. Business also does fund some research directly (though there's a long, uncomfortable history of business tainting such research), and individuals enriched by their business ventures contribute to university endowments, the returns from which are a major source of funding. And of course many businesses pay significant taxes in one way or another, a bit of which ends up in education.