First of all, I must say that I agree with you in almost everything you say. The methodology used by FIFA in its ranking system really sucks. But, it is not true that they can't get seeded. If they were smarter, they can perfectly use the system to their benefit, specially by not playing too many friendlies, as they usually do, and only restrict themselves to those continental tournaments strictly of their own Confed, where they got it lots easier for them to get points than whatever it may be like in the stronger Confeds, where the level of the teams is lots higher than whatever it is at their respectful Confed. Basicly by the type of opposition they got at home (where the teams at a better level are very few). Whenever they face harder opposition, it's lots likely to get more draws and defeats which will affect their ranking negatively. Besides, even wins against top teams in friendlies, don't add much points to anyones ranking, if your team is at the top 20 and more so, they take points away. Particularly, for Mexico playing Copa America, given the opposition they will have, they are not going to get the same amount of wins (which are the matches that give the biggest amount of points) they usually get playing the Gold Cup, so their ranking is not going to increase that much. And very likely that it will actually decrease. Most of the times they play it, they lose more points there, than those which they win. To get lots of points there, they must achieve an outstanding performance (almost the same it is for anyone participating, btw), something that hasn't happened in a long time. Now if you compare Mexico's reality, to the one of Colombia's for instance. Mexico can get big amounts of points by wining against a team ranked below the 100 mark in its own continental tournament (where there is lots of teams ranked below 100, so their possibility of this to happen is bigger). While Colombia in their respectful continental tournament, never can, as usually there aren't any teams below the 100 mark in Conmebol. For Colombia every point they get at a continental tournament will be harder to achieve it, while for Mexico it will happen lots more often. Now if they want to play against the big boys from Conmebol, they put themselves in the same bag as every other Conmebol team, so they can get bigger amount of points (in case they win or draw), almost in the same proportion of the amount of points they will lose (which even with a good performance at copa America, can happen more frequently than whatever it will be at the Gold Cup). For lesser teams of Concacaf, it may be even worse than that, as it is very likely they will get more defeats, which counts the same as evey defeat at any level, taking points away from those they already have (if they achieve mostly wins, of course their ranking will increase, but it's not likely for that to happen).