Pre-Marketing 3.15.11

March 15, 2011, 3:38 PM UTC

* Doug Kass: A contagion of black swans

* Ash Bennington: New York Fed prez does a mean Marie Antoinette impersonation

* Michael Hiltzik says we should get rid of the federal debt limit: “When a symbol becomes a fetish, you have trouble.”

* Morning Call: U.S. futures point sharply lower, London opens softEuropean shares fall and Japanese shares plummet.

* Be sure to sign up for Term Sheet’s daily emails

* Aflac (AFL) needs a new duck, after firing Gilbert Gottfried

* Exchange merger madness: Nasdaq considers a hostile bid for NYSE

* Meir Statman: Why pension fund managers generate negative alpha

* Departing BoA M&A chief Jeff Kaplan says goodbye to being a deal guy

* John Carney: The SEC saw Rajat Gupta as a clear and present danger to shareholders

* Tweet of the Day: @zerohedge: It’s a day ending in Y, meaning another El-Erian Op-Ed has just hit the tape

* Daniel Mudd, CEO of Fortress Investment Group (FIG), may face civil charges related to his past stewardship of Fannie Mae

* James Surowiecki: “In a contest between millionaire athletes and billionaire socialists it’s the guys on the field who deserve to win.”

* Just asking: If outgoing Google (GOOG) CEO Eric Schmidt becomes Commerce Secretary, what becomes of his TomorrowVentures investment platform?