The 1%-vs-99% inequality dynamic that plagues America's economy as a whole extends to the world of higher education. And the richest universities in America had a great year last year.

This is not all that surprising, considering the fact that prestigious universities play a key role in the creation and perpetuation of America's ever-more-entrenched class system. It is only right that those catapulted to great wealth and power by elite universities would give something back, so that their own children might also be able to achieve outsize wealth and power one day. Last year was a record one for donations to colleges: a total of $37.5 billion, up nearly 11% from the year before. Of course, most of that was not going to your local community college. Inside Higher Ed notes that "The top 20 colleges in fund-raising brought in more than $10 billion. That means that 28.6 percent of the total was given to fewer than 2 percent" of schools.

The biggest recipient of all: Harvard, with $1.16 billion in donations. Stanford was second, with about $930 million, followed by USC, Northwestern, and Johns Hopkins. "Meanwhile," the Wall Street Journal says, "schools in the middle of the pack are getting a smaller slice of the philanthropic pie, as they may not have such active, wealthy or well-connected alums."

College really is a training ground for the real world—the rich get richer and etc etc. Not much to say about all this except to point out that if all that money had been donated to real charities, tens or hundreds of thousands of human lives could have been saved, but instead we have the Stanford Alumni Association.

[Photo: Flickr]