On a fresh gimmick install all my apps are running slow.
Logging into a gnome session takes around 30 seconds and all apps have a 10-20 second delay before roaring into life. Once up and running apps fine.
starting from a terminal gives similar results with no errors.
Make sure your network is up, especially your "lo" interface, which should have 127.0.0.1 assigned.
Next thing to do: make sure you have a hostname for your IP addresses set in /etc/hosts or an external DNS server. Many programs do reverse-DNS lookups for your IP and wait for a timeout from your DNS server.
Also, just FWIW... The stuff from the Testing repo seems much snappier, if you're the sort to take a few chances.