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This is one of the approaches which may suit a particular circumstance.
However, most of the time we are aiming to achieve as much as possible with as little code and maintainance overhead as possible.
Also, still remains the issue of dreaded IE6 and the support for it (I am having to write this comment through IE6 at the moment).
Your solution does not work in IE6 as you have described it and I am struggling to see which design template would tolerate horrible looking scroll bars on any box which has overflowing content in it (highly likely on most sites I have ever worked on).
Nice writing style by the way.