Actually judging from the only in-game picture, no it isn't. If anything it's getting slower. But that's bound to happen as they continue to increase the accuracy of the emulation. It will probobly continue to get slower and slower until they decide to work on optimization a bit. Still, nice to see how much progress they've achived. The movies look much better than before.
Given the complex multiprocessor archetecture of the PS2, I highly doubt it. Plus, given the fact that the PS2 can actually preform memory transfers at speeds faster than today's computers, even with HLE you still couldn't get full speed.
By full speed do you mean 60fps? I agree with that... however, I do believe it's possible to get emulation of the PS2 to a consistent playable level (50/60FPS). Many of the lower end games that don't stretch the GPU of the PS2 too much are already becoming fairly fast, and fairly accurately emulated. (Though... most of these games are 2D for the most part, 3D tends to always take a hit)