Indeed, I seem to remember it being purely a temporary system until moving to a different system once the Assembly was up in running. Or temporary until it became traditional when the Labour AMs realise they might be risking their seats by moving to STV or MMP or whatever.It's interesting that the Scottish Assembly was intended to use bloc vote, given that had previously been used by the Greater London Council but had been changed to smaller single-member constituencies in 1972. The London version of course had as many as four representatives per constituency and was not very representative (even compared to FPTP) because it was rare for the votes to split that much, so a very close result across the whole of a borough would still elect four Tories and no Labour representatives or vice-versa.
I can see Sillars standing as the sole SLP candidate in South Ayrshire hoping to draw enough split Labour votes to sneak through, possibly even going so far to call for people to vote for either Labour candidate alongside him. There could be this mentality that "well, I'm still technically voting for Labour, I'm just also voting for Jim." The precedent here would be interesting once the *SDP becomes a factor; in Scotland the chattering classes were not really ready to stop voting Labour to any notable extent during the 1980s but "it's alright because I'm still voting for Labour I just think the SDP make some good points about claret."The split votes in Sillars' constituency would be deeply sexy.
Would definitely like to see a phresh TL/List with an SNP/79 Group split, but I think if they had more seats (Westminster+Assembly) and therefore more channels of patronage, the discontent and factional bitterness would be less intense than OTL.