I suggest that one of the overarching themes of low-sec is corruption.
I see low-sec to be a place where a willingness to ignore rules can get you a quick buck.
* Illegal goods to transport? Smuggle it in or bribe someone to look the other way
* Trading got you down? corruption and graft
* PI not profitable? Strip mine and pollute.
* Someone got something you like? Take it.
* Don't like it? Pay someone else to impose order... your kind of order.
In other words, good old anarcho-capitalism at work.