Here’s a real treat for people who enjoy contemplating hypocrisy in its various dimensions.

A champion of Berkeley rent control was ordered last week to pay his former tenants more than $100,000 in restitution by the very rent board he campaigned to create.
By a unanimous vote, the Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board found that Michael Berkowitz, a paid aide to Councilmember Maudelle Shirek, had willfully misrepresented his residency status at his 2820 Derby St. property to skirt rent control. Berkowitz also works in a second position as chief of information services and neighborhood planning for the City of San Francisco.
The award reflects the total amount Berkowitz overcharged his tenants each month since 1992.
Asked to comment at a city council meeting several days after the Rent Stabilization Board?s decision, Shirek said she had not heard about the case against her aide.
Berkowitz says he made no intentional attempt to avoid rent control.
?I made a mistake. I thought I was covered, but it was not willful or malicious or anything like that,? he told the rent board. He added in an interview Wednesday he was unsure if he would appeal the decision to the Alameda County Superior Court.

Berkowitz and Shirek, for those uninitiated in Berkeley city politics, are at the far left end of Berkeley’s left-wing ruling class’s political spectrum. This crowd is known for doing things like visiting Fidel, propaganda junkets to visit the PLO, and (one of my personal favorites) a visit to celebrate the anniversary of the Berlin Wall, when it was still there, and on the EASTERN side!
Berkowitz dinged by the Rent Board? It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.
Welcome to the club, Mike!
NOTE: It is unusual for the far left (which runs the Rent Board) to treat one of their own this way, and an informant tells me that Berkowitz must have committed some sort of unknown crime. As my friend observed:

Berkowitz must have been on “the outs” with the rads for reasons unknown to me. That happens. Sometimes, they turn on their own. They are all paranoid and are always on the lookout for enemy agents within, like FBI moles in the Communist Party back in the 1950s.
I have known some old Reds who got ostracized, and never found out why.

I answered that sometimes the reason can be as simple as making friends with the wrong person.
Might Maudelle be thinking about getting a new aide?