For months now, Hamish Macdonnell seems to have been determined to promote the narrative that a Labour return to power is written in the stars, and his latest rather dubious astrological observation is based on a supposed hardening of the Lib Dems' opposition to a referendum on independence. His conclusion is that "the only logical powerbroking deal after next May's election looks like being between Labour and the Lib Dems".
Frankly, I'm struggling to think of a deal that looks less logical than that one just at the moment. I can certainly see the theoretical appeal to the Scottish Lib Dems of demonstrating their independence from the federal party by choosing a coalition with Labour (although that appeal may fade pretty fast when they start pondering the full implications), but for Labour it would be an incredibly difficult leap. They would effectively be sacrificing their capacity to launch full-blooded attacks on a Tory-led Westminster government whenever they feel like it, and my guess is that would be too high a price, even to secure the prize of a stable four-year term in office. Macdonnell is also overlooking two obvious possibilities - a) that the Lib Dem vote might collapse so far that a coalition with Labour isn't even arithmetically viable, and b) that the Tories may be more pro-active than before in trying to forge an alliance (whether a coalition or something short of that) to freeze Labour out.
More broadly, the quotes from Tavish Scott in the article are highly amusing. Apparently the Lib Dems used to be "concerned" about his negativity towards a referendum, but the "modern party" has "moved on" and "couldn't give two hoots about it". Hmmm. Given that, to the best of my recollection, those concerns reached their peak as recently as the last year or two, this "modern" incarnation of the party of which Tavish speaks must be almost as new as his last haircut. In which case, the SNP have every reason to keep the faith - at this rate of change, the Lib Dems will in all likelihood be embarking on a brave new postmodern era by Christmas.
As an aside, I'm somewhat dubious about Macdonnell's assertion that the SNP made a referendum a precondition of a coalition in 2007. They were certainly vocal about the policy's central importance, but the only party setting literal preconditions were the Lib Dems themselves - it was beneath their dignity to even enter discussions unless the SNP abandoned the referendum policy in advance.