Here's a link to the Register's editorial on the new surveillance law passed and signed over the weekend. I think it covers most of the relevant isssues, except perhaps for the bogusness of the "crisis" atmosphere that led the administration to claim it had to be passed right away, and that if some attack happened during the August recess the Democrats would pay a heavy political price.
If the Democrats bought that argument, shame on them. They've gotten a good deal of criticism in the left/progressive/civil-libertarian (not all overlapping, alas) blogosphere for being craven. I'll repeat, because hardly anyone else is saying it. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if they figured their guys would be in control of the executive branch soon enough, and they wouldn't mind the executive branch having juiced-up surveillance powers. Hillary doesn't strike me as reluctant to use almost any kind of power that comes to hand. Nor does Obama.