I whole heartedly agree. Let them do as well as you can let them.
The real difficulty is that it’s easy to say, and very hard to do. If you don’t let them make mistakes your quarterbacking them, and they won’t learn. Also, who wins a shootout is very often decided by the cards. If they end up low on influence and booted, do you move out to win the game, or explain you could win, but want to keep showing them more DTR has to offer? If casting Blood Curse wins you the game, do you just not cast it, or do you go into a shootout to cast it as a bullet reducer? Is that then showing them how to play badly? Is it bad to play cheating resolutions if it lets the win, since cheating resolutions are pivotal to game balance?
So, I guess I would have to add, if it’s difficult to ‘let them win’, then absolutely don’t be an ass. Be open and very honest why your making the plays you are. For DTR, I think the best way to go easy, until the cards decide the end of the game, is to let them build up some economy. If I were new, I would have no problem ending up slightly losing, but I’d be very upset if I ever felt like I never had a chance, and never was able to build anything.