In industrialized and developing nations, there exist a certain amount of patronage from government to the people in exchange for support given and as a means of rewarding loyalty.
In developing nations, the practice has become part of the political culture. It is expected by the people. It is accepted by people. Thus, in some jurisdictions, the government, as the largest employer, is expected to maintain and to sustain such political patronage by awarding jobs with comfortable benefits including better than normal pension plans to the people.
Historically, there's been Tammany Hall in New York City and the political machine of Chicago. In the Caribbean and in some nations of Europe, supporters of a political party voted into office expect jobs with full trimmings as rewards. Research grants have to be made to science, medicine and the arts. Though the legal aspect of some of the patronage practices has been questioned, stability was generally maintained.
However, recent global financial crises have now forced cash-strapped nations to reassess many social programs that were in placed as sweetheart deals to citizens. Tens of thousands of people have protested against austerity measures from Ireland, to Spain, to Greece and elsewhere. Austere polices attack the stable norm many citizens have grown use to and have come to expect from their governments.
Whether or not subsidized energy payments have been slashed or water payments increased or pensions re-scaled, or research grants decreased, austerity measures not well received by populations, have the potential to destabilizing some nations.
Therefore, to ease fears and any pending instability, cash-starved nations forced to adopt dreaded austerity policies, must find a way to balance national necessity against economic reality - taxation versus spending cuts, in order to retain political power, sovereignty, social order and the national well being.
The international financial institutions charged with the debt of these nations should respect the national identity, customs and culture of these nations as terms are arranged for repayment of debts and for more loans.