Let's not spread FUD here: Java is not slow.
I think it's more a misunderstanding than it is FUD. When technical people hear "fast" or "slow", we tend to think in terms of how efficiently a technology will perform. But when business people use those words, they tend to mean "how soon can I have it?"
Well-coded Java might outperform well-coded Perl in some cases, but Perl (or Python or Ruby) will often get you there a lot quicker, without spending time wrestling with language that wants to put you into a straightjacket for your own good. Sooner and slower usually beats later but faster.