I'm going to focus on this, which is a very standard sound bite that I have heard before:
I’m deeply concerned about the Federal Reserve’s plans to buy up anywhere from $600 billion to as much as $1 trillion of government securities. The technical term for it is “quantitative easing.” It means our government is pumping money into the banking system by buying up treasury bonds. And where, you may ask, are we getting the money to pay for all this? We’re printing it out of thin air.You can forgive people for this view as, to some extent, it is propagated by the approach people often take in undergraduate money and banking courses, where "money creation" is treated as some kind of mysterious process. The Fed is no more "printing it out of thin air" than is any economic entity when it issues a liability. For example, General Motors could issue a corporate bond to purchase new capital equipment. A liability is issued, out of thin air, and an asset is acquired. How is that different from what the Fed is up to? Well, the corporate bond issued by General Motors is a promise to pay something specific in the future. The Fed's liabilities - currency and reserves, principally - are not promises to pay anything. However, the Fed can, if it chooses, sell the assets in its portfolio at any time, and retire the money it has issued. In this sense, the money issued by the Fed has something in common with stock issued by corporations, which is also not a promise to pay anything specific in the future. A corporation can issue dividends on its stock, at its discretion, but this is not required. Further, just as the Fed can retire money, a corporation can buy back its stock.
The Fed is just a financial intermediary and, as such, it behaves like other financial intermediaries. It issues liabilities (out of thin air) and buys assets, and it has to worry about the liquidity of its assets and liabilities, their maturity, their rates of return, etc. What makes the Fed different is that it has been assigned a monopoly on the issue of particular kinds of liabilities - circulating small-denomination pieces of paper, and the stuff that is used daily in interbank clearing and settlement (reserves). Printing things out of thin air is certainly not the Fed's distinguishing characteristic.