Second referendum? Beware of what you wish for. I’ve had experience of optimism – and it doesn’t always pan out as planned.

Like, for instance, when I was a teenager. Disappointed with my miserable maths O-level result, I opted for a resit… and failed. Since that fateful results day, hundreds of years ago, I’ve never been entirely sure whether I have an O-level in mathematics or not.

Depends who’s asking, I suppose. Still, it all worked out well enough in the end. Concentrating on English and languages for future study, I worked with what I had and stopped worrying about the logarithms and algebra that had passed under a bridge I’d rather forget.

Never wanted to be an accountant or banker anyway. Angry, disappointed and indignant optimism is driving us all crackers at the moment.

It has separated us from our wits and turned us into point-scoring, name-calling fools. It’s everywhere. From bullish Brexit victors – wondering what the hell to do with their triumph – to depressed Remainers – calling foul on a skewed democratic process they insist was riddled with lies – the call for a resit is deafening.

Anne Pickles That’s just daft. Understandable but completely cuckoo. What’s done is done. It’s time to work with what we have and hope for the best. In truth, that’s all anyone can ever do – hope for the best.

I voted to remain in the European Union and I share disappointment with those who have been genuinely upset by the referendum result. I felt like a British European when I voted and I feel like one now – albeit a shame-faced one. But it is what it is.

Those who voted out were equally as entitled to their hopes and opinions as those who wanted in and, unless we’re going to spend the next 50 years sniping and bitching at each other in a country split by anger, we’re going to have to play on with the cards the ballot box has dealt us. What has happened since Britain’s vote has been enormous and more than a little scary.

The prime minister has resigned, handing over ensuing dirty divorce work to rivals unprepared and unwilling to take on the task.

The Conservative Party is torn apart, Labour’s in a state of civil war, no natural leader is evident anywhere – at least none without a knife in the back – when an early general election is certain.

Europe is destabilised, sterling is through the floor and the politicians to whom we look for positivity are still making their lame excuses.

Iain Duncan Smith, for instance, admitting at the weekend that Leave’s “promises were no more than a series of possibilities.” Be all that as it may. The job of polling has been done. Real life begs urgent attention and that won’t come with a repeat referendum.

Politicians are notoriously disappointing creatures. Be they national or local, their grasp of the here and now most often leaves much to be desired.

To be honest, if more of them lived real lives, rather than Facebook and Twitter lives (how do they find the time?), they might achieve a lot more, in terms of the public service they’re sworn to. Will they learn from the debacle into which we’re sinking now?

I wouldn’t put any devalued money on it. But we, the electorate, should start learning and with some haste. Democracy is a word thrown out to justify anything and everything – whether right, wrong, damaging or just plain stupid. It is supposed to shut you up, when you hold politicians to account.

Now though, as everything from our own, close to non-existent, government to our position in a perilous wider world is in troubling question, is as good a time as any to examine our democracy. Is it honest? Does it belong to us or to greasy-pole climbers?

It is in trouble. It is ailing. It is based on half-truths, lies, false promises, misinformation, political ambition – and it would have been whatever the outcome of the EU Referendum. Our democracy need fixing. Quickly. There’s no time like the present – because, as we’ve always known, there’s no present like time.