just a thought pineman and not sure if this will apply to you but certainly worth checking out.
Start and type
if you do not have elevated rights,type
cmd,you should now have the black dos box,then again type
Now look through through a couple of services to check they are set to AUTO.
Though i would suspect these to be enabled if you internet access.
Have you tried disbling Norton totally ? especially if you have the email scanner active and any antispam protection.
I think Norton is the culprit here and may need uninstalling and reinstall.
You know the uninstall route Pineman,this is what i would try first.
This link seems to point to Norton also click here
Though personally i would do away with Norton.Mcafee has these problems also,though i do have Mcafee on one machine but configured to suit my needs.