The Gillard Government currently has a problem with off-shore processing of asylum seekers. Having failed to get the "Malaysian Solution" through the High Court and the "Nauru Solution" looking shaky, I have an entirely new solution. I call it the "Enterprise Solution".
Under my brand new scheme, Australia would buy the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-65) from the United States which is scheduled for retirement in 2013 anyway. Then we do a major refit.
The ship currently has enough living quarters for a maximum of 5,828 but if we removed the capacity to carry 70 aircraft then I'm sure that a few more could be put on board and the standards of living on board ship can be quite nice indeed, provided the ship is appointed properly. Anyone who has spent time aboard a cruise ship can attest that living quarters are quite reasonable. If the Chinese can do it with the former Soviet carrier "Kiev", then why can't we?
This would mean that there would be no requirement to change the Migration Act; no High Court defences. Because the ship itself would be Australian Territory, you could effectively have on-shore processing in the middle of the ocean. Also, because you could fly a number of small transport aircraft from the ship, people could be flown to Australia once processed.
If a more immediate solution was required, the USS Independence (CV-62) and USS Constellation (CV-64) are already in mothballs and don't need to be decommissioned. The Australian Government could just buy them this afternoon and then refit them.
Honestly, if I can think creatively about this then why can't our elected representatives? And of course there is a great irony to the problem of so-called "boat people" by having a solution using another boat.