Apt-fast (and an optional backend upgrade)
Apt-fast is a script that is a drop-in replacement for apt-get. It uses the axel multiconnection download manager to try and increase speeds...but in my limited testing, the MLCR and Mepis repos only allow single connections. It does seem to help Debian repo downloads.
Just use "apt-fast" instead of apt-get in your terminal commands for testing:
apt-fast install foohttp://dl.dropbox.com/u/1540715/apt-fast_project.zip
If this helps anybody, we'll get it into the CR.